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Pianist travels 5,000 miles to Polish border to welcome weeping Ukrainians

Pianista Davide Martello codziennie gra na przejściu granicznym w Medyce

Nicola Marfisi/AGF/Shutterstock | Rex Features/East News

Cerith Gardiner - published on 03/11/22

Davide Martello uses the power of music to bring unity at a time of despair.

Davide Martello is a pianist on a mission to spread good will and solidarity through his musical talents. His desire to use music as a medium to bring solace and unity to those in hardship has seen him travel to some of the most conflict-ridden places, including Afghanistan and Istanbul.

Now, with the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, Martello has taken his customized piano on a 15-hour trip to reach the Polish border, stating “I just want to welcome the refugees” — a welcome gesture for the displaced Ukrainians as they enter a new country full of fear and anxiety for themselves, their loved ones, and their homeland, as shared by CNN.

The 27-year-old drove with his piano to play at the Medyka border crossing. His choice of song was “Forever Young” by Alphaville, with the hope that the song’s message would reach Vladimir Putin and open his eyes as to the consequences of this war.

Sweet sounds among the cannon blasts

Martello’s efforts have not gone unnoticed, with refugees moved to tears. Some people have taken to social media to share their thoughts:

“Great gesture for people crossing the border. Beautiful music. Sounds of freedom, instead of cannon blasts.” Whereas another post shared: “Touching … Beautiful … Bravo! The need for hope and beauty in our hearts … They still exist … A great way to remind ourselves of that.”

And in a furthersweet gesture, a woman joined Martello at the piano and played “We Are the Champions” by Queen.

The pianist, who has been likened to the character played by actor Adrien Brody in The Pianist, has also played at the Korczowa crossing with other moving melodies such as “L’Amour Toujours” by Gigi D’Agostino.

A tailor-made piano

The piano itself has been adapted to help Martello, who lives in Germany, allowing him to travel the world and give impromptu concerts wherever he stops. Initially he had his piano placed on a specially designed trailer, but when his means of transport broke down on a trip to the USA he had to adapt his way of getting around. He added wheels to the piano so it can be easily placed in a trolley, then attached to his bike.

However, if you look closely you’ll see that the piano is actually a stage piano in the shell of a baby grand, with a battery and speaker inside so his music can be heard far and wide.

Since the war began there has been a myriad of individuals and groups trying to help those in need, and demonstrating once more the very best of humanity.

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