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Home Arts Mann Art Gallery takes first step in new fundraising campaign with Piano Bar: Art and Sound

Mann Art Gallery takes first step in new fundraising campaign with Piano Bar: Art and Sound

Mann Art Gallery takes first step in new fundraising campaign with Piano Bar: Art and Sound
A patron admires a piece of art during the 2015 Kyla Art Show at the Mann Art Gallery. -- Herald file photo.

The sound of piano keys and the art of ambience are top of mind for the Mann Art Gallery as they embark on their newest fundraiser.

Piano Bar: Art and Sound debuts on Friday at the gallery. Curator Marcus Miller said they’re hoping to create an easygoing atmosphere for residents looking to unwind after a hard week.

“We wanted to make the Mann Art Gallery a very classy, chill-out, end-of-the-week place to be to start your weekend off, and we want to do this as a regular event,” Miller said on Tuesday. “We want it to be classy. We want it to be very relaxed.”

A selection of wines, beers, signature cocktails and upscale appetizers will be available for purchase. Attendees can also hear performances from local pianist Brenner Holash, who will be on hand to lighten up the atmosphere.

“We noticed at a Christmas Party last year that Brenner sat down at a piano and he was just fantastic,” Miller said. “In fact, that’s kind of where the idea for the piano bar started. We were all in the living room, and Brenner was playing away at the keys an providing exactly the kind of ambiance we want.”

Funds raised from the event will help improve the gallery’s display and storage space. Miller said they’ve put a lot of money into upgrading their collection over the years, but not as much into the space itself.

That’s going to change this year, although the board still has to finalize their plans. Miller said the goal is to improve the gallery’s status, and attract national exhibits to compliment local and provincial ones.

“The entire space actually needs reconfiguration,” Miller said. “This year’s board has been very, very excited with ideas that are still very much … on the sketch board here.”

The gallery also plans to start a new capital campaign in the future, and has been approved for a feasibility study. That means two experts will arrive from Ottawa to provide suggestions for on everything from lighting quality to humidity levels.

“We can do that (national exhibits) right now, and we’re doing a disservice to our collection, and to the artists who show here, so we think it’s time to step up now and get on to this facility improvement,” Miller said. “It’s going to be years, and we’re starting out with a piano bar.”

Tickets for Piano Bar: Art and Sound cost $10/person. They are available in-person at the Mann Art Gallery, or at the gallery website. Attendees must be ages 19 and up.

The event starts at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, April 29, and runs until 7:30 p.m. Piano Bar is come and go as you please.