British Pianist Playing Classical Music For Resue Elephants Will Melt Your Heart
Music can invoke a variety of feelings inside of people. Some songs will get a person’s blood pumping before exercise and others will help a person relax, triggering the release of endorphins. Certain lyrics or tracks from a specific artist can give us pause, but is it the same for our animal brethren?
Paul Barton, a man who studied fine arts at the Royal Academy of Arts in London, moved to the country two decades ago and taught piano for a short while. He met his wife Khwan soon after.
After a few weeks of exploring his new home country, Paul came across the elephant sanctuary Elephants World. They house old, injured, and handicapped elephants, allowing them to live out the rest of their days in peace.
Inspiration struck when Barton found the place, so he decided to bring along his piano and play classical music for the elephants that lived there.
“The first time I played piano at Elephants World, a blind elephant called Plara was closest to the piano by coincidence,” Paul said. “When he heard Beethoven for the first time he stopped eating, stood still and listened to the music with grass protruding from his mouth. So I returned to Elephants World often after that day and stayed for long periods.”
The ‘guests’ staying at the sanctuary are by no means prisoners.
“The elephants are free to walk about around the piano, they are not chained or tethered in any way,” he said. “Some elephants get very close to the piano of their own accord, they might drape their trunk over the piano even.”
His playing had become such regular occurrence that the British man moved his wife and 3-year-old daughter to Elephants World.
Seeing videos of Paul play for the rescue elephants, you can tell that these creatures can understand music on an emotional level just like we can.