Search

Homeless pianist learned to play on public piano at St Pancras Station

PUBLISHED: 18:10 13 September 2017 | UPDATED: 15:35 14 September 2017

Picture: Emily Banks

Picture: Emily Banks

Archant

A French pianist who mesmerised the audience at a recital in Lauderdale House last week learned to play on a public piano at St Pancras Station while homeless.

Picture: Emily Banks Picture: Emily Banks

Francois Pierron, 22, moved to London from Calais in October 2014 and after having his wallet stolen and ended up living on the streets.

Mr Pierron would visit St Pancras Station every night and play on the piano there which is free to use to the public.

“During the day I was making lots of bad decisions so at night I needed to play the piano as a way of escape,” Mr Pierron said.

“I used to play the piano in France, a keyboard, but I was very bad. I have mastered my piano playing in London.

“I’ve learnt how to compose and do my harmonics while on the streets.”

He said the piano provided an escape from the harsh perils of being homeless in London.

However, after two years, Mr Pierron was banned from the station because of loitering. This ban remains in place until 2018.

Mr Pierron was invited by mayor of Camden Cllr Richard Cotton to play at Lauderdale House as part of a fundraising evening for CW4S homeless charity.

He described the event as was one of the “best places I’ve ever played at.”

The Frenchman, who is currently staying at a hostel in Notting Hill Gate says that he wants to build a future in music.

He said: “I want to 
collaborate with more people and be able to connect. I don’t know how to read music so that is something I want to learn so that I could maybe be part of an orchestra.

“Coming from my background, you truly understand what must be truly valued,” he said.

Former Labour spindoctor Alastair Campbell, who spoke at the event about homelessness and addiction, praised Mr Pierron’s performance.

He said: “It was the highlight of the evening. He was really amazing and it is a wonderful story.

“I wonder how many more talented people there are sleeping rough on our streets that we just walk past?

“As a society, it is time that we stop looking the other way as we pass people who are living rough on the street.”

“We need to get rid of the stigma around homelessness.”

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

13:45

A couple with a baby told today how they narrowly cheated death after escaping from their smoke-filled top floor flat during the fatal fire in Daleham Gardens.

13:23

An elderly couple have been left distraught by a ‘sick’ fake doctor who kissed them on both cheeks after taking £200 to pay towards a cure for their disabled son’s condition.

17:37

Hampstead Community Centre will be celebrating their fortieth anniversary this weekend, with a special market.

15:50

A Stroud Green councillor has said he won’t stand in next year’s local elections blaming a ‘poisonous’ selection process.

11:05

A photography competition showcasing the beauty of Hampstead Heath has received more than 1,000 entries.

10:11

A success story of one of Archant London’s Student Takeover schemes is encouraging students at City of Westminster College and College of North West London to get involved in a potentially “life-changing” opportunity at the Ham&High.

Yesterday, 18:47

A 22-year-old Camden man belonging to a moped smash and grab gang has been found guilty along with nine others of raiding 17 shops and costing retailers an estimated £1million.

Yesterday, 15:05

Haringey Council has clinched a deal forcing the developer behind plans for a multi-million pound restoration of Hornsey Town Hall to pay for 11 affordable homes at the site.

PROMOTED CONTENT

One of London’s most popular animal welfare charities will roll out the red carpet for glamorous guests and their beloved pet dogs as their annual fundraiser returns.

An opportunity of a lifetime has arisen for media-savvy students at City of Westminster College and the College of North West London.

Education editor James Scott speaks to Sarah Creasey about life as headteacher of Parliament Hill School.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now