“It has been our impossible dream to put a grand piano on the Great Wall. The Piano Guys would like to dedicate this music video to the visionary behind it all and the man whose dream this has always been: Paul Anderson,” said pianist Jon Schmidt.
Buena Park, Calif. (PRWEB) October 31, 2013
The very idea of moving a grand piano and cello atop the Great Wall of China to shoot a music video sounds like an impossible feat, at best. For starters, the unprecedented special permission required from the Chinese government, along with daunting restrictions and logistics are enough to dissuade even the most determined musician.
And yet, a newly released video by The Piano Guys performing on the wall is a study in how to accomplish the impossible, with the help of a willing government, artistic determination and support organizations such as Yamaha Entertainment Group and Yamaha Artist Services Beijing.
The resulting video, “Kung Fu Piano: Cello Ascends,” (http://4wrd.it/KUNGFU_PIANO_VIDEO) captures this beautiful and historic performance, and has already garnered more than 3.6 million views since its release on October 9.
The Piano Guys, an immensely popular group that has made their name based on self-made videos of their pop classical music performances on YouTube and subsequent album releases, consists of pianist Jon Schmidt, cellist Steven Sharp Nelson, producer/videographer Paul Anderson and music producer Al van der Beek. Together, they have amassed more than 276 million views to date, and more than 2 million subscribers on YouTube.
“Since The Piano Guys began, it has been our impossible dream to put a grand piano on the Great Wall,” said Jon Schmidt. “People laughed at us when we said we were determined to do it. It is done. All of us at The Piano Guys would like to dedicate this music video to the visionary behind it all and the man whose dream this has always been: Paul Anderson.”
The behind-the-scenes action leading up to the video shoot was nearly as improbable and compelling as the finished video. While getting permission from the Chinese government was a great coup, the group soon discovered that they still faced real challenges.
To start, the permission they received only allowed them a limited 12-hour timeframe to shoot the music video. And while they were able to use a crane to get the 913-pound Yamaha C7X grand piano on the Great Wall of China, 20 local men were given the harrowing task of carrying the piano by hand up countless stone steps to where it appears in the video.
Additional hurdles included lighting, uninvited onlookers climbing the wall to get a glimpse of the performance and the limited equipment and crew that were allowed (and that could fit) atop the wall. This video chronicles the arduous preparations for this production (http://4wrd.it/MAKING_KUNGFU_VIDEO).
“It was an amazing feat and a life changing experience. We are very grateful for the opportunity and all the support we received from our support organizations, including Yamaha Entertainment Group and Yamaha Artist Services for providing and transporting the C7X piano to this lofty perch,” adds Paul Anderson.
“The Piano Guys are valued Yamaha Piano Artists and their series of YouTube videos are wildly popular, with hundreds of millions of hits. We jumped at the opportunity to support them in this ambitious project,” said Chris Gero, founder and VP, Yamaha Entertainment Group. “We are very proud to have our world-class pianos featured regularly in their sophisticated music videos. This one, of course, is particularly breathtaking.”
The Piano Guys started making music videos together for fun and their “hobby” turned into a worldwide phenomenon when their self-made YouTube videos resonated with a huge online audience. With the success of The Piano Guys’ first two major label releases, The Piano Guys and The Piano Guys 2, Portrait/Sony Masterworks has just released the classical-pop group’s new holiday album, A Family Christmas.
About Yamaha Entertainment Group
Yamaha Entertainment Group is a boutique, one-stop shop, record label developed to be the champion of the musician with the backing power of the largest music manufacturer in the world. YEG is branding, promotion, concert production, content development, product placement, tour support, piano logistics and artist relations, all rolled into one. Home to more than 3,600 talented artists, YEG is responsible for the development and advancement of the Yamaha brand name through numerous artist related activities worldwide.