Gloria (#827) 04-05-15

A lady was playing an outdoor piano, part of the Sarasota Keys project. Several highly decorated pianos are at busy street corners, anyone can sit down and play. One is in front of the Clasico bar and restaurant. It's great for the owner, it is amazing how many good musicians sit down and entertain the Clasico customers.

Well, this lady, Gloria, also sang. She sang soulful music with great feeling. I left a few dollars on the piano and waited for a break, to speak with her. Gloria is 64 and has been playing since age 10. A Sarasota native, she attended the Ringling College of Art and Design for a couple of years. Her goal is to resume her studies there and get a degree.

I asked where she worked. Gloria indicated the West Coast Center, with which I was unfamiliar. It is an unassuming building that I pass every day. It houses a church and a school, The West Coast School for Human Development. Gloria said that the few dollars that I left would be donated to the school. I immediately scooped it up and replaced it with a 20.

But she wasn't finished. In the late 80s, she found out that she could paint. Found out? She now sells her fine arts portrait paintings in northern Sarasota. A lady of many talents.

Before I left, she played and sang two Gospel songs. Again, her skills are not so much the technical playing, but the soulful feeling that she puts into the pieces.