Teen Grand Schemers: Piano Mystery Was a Work of Art

Teen burned piano on sandbar for art school video

By Amara Sohn, Brian Hamacher and Todd Wright
|  Friday, Jan 28, 2011  |  Updated 7:08 AM EDT
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The teens who placed a piano on a sandbar in Biscayne Bay talk about why he did it.

The teens who placed a piano on a sandbar in Biscayne Bay talk about why he did it.

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Grand Schemers Talk About Piano Plot

Nicholas Harrington and Julian Kolevris-Roots are the modern day phantoms of the opera.

Biscayne Bay Piano Mystery Solved

There's been a lot of bizarre stories out of Miami, but this one really struck a chord. Why mysteriously plopped a grand piano on a sandbar in Biscayne Bay?
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Two Miami teens had a grand ol' time laughing as the media and law enforcement were puzzled about how a grand piano found its way to a sand bar in the middle of Biscayne Bay.

Was it aliens? A disgruntled musician?

Not quite. Consider Nicholas Harrington and Julian Kolevris-Roots the local phantoms of the opera.

The Miami Shores teens finally came forward after weeks of speculation about how the 650-pound musical instrument made it out to sea.

"I never thought it would get so much publicity, but I am glad it did," said Harrington, who claims the piano belonged to his grandmother. "People love a mystery."

The mystery began with a stunning photo taken by Suzanne Beard. Beard and her husband, residents of nearby Quayside condominiums, spotted the piano from their building about 250 yards away and decided to get a closer look.

On Jan. 8, they hopped in a boat to check it out.

"There were tons of pelicans on the piano at the time and he just kept getting closer and we got this great shot of them, they were scared so they flew away," Beard said.

Beard entered the snapshot in a National Geographic photography contest and it was published on the magazine's website.

The past few weeks have been full of speculation as officials and residents wondered how the heavy musical instrument made its way onto the sandbar.

An indie filmmmaker in the Panhandle, Billie Yeager, who once claimed to be Jimmy Hendrix's son, took credit for the stunt, claiming he and his wife pulled it onto the sandbar for his latest film.

But then a 16-year-old aspiring artist came forward to claim that the piano is part of a project that he hopes will get him into college.

Harrington, a junior at MAST Academy, says he and his friends decided to burn it during a New Year's Eve celebration in Miami Shores.

The next day, Harrington decided he'd burn it again, this time taking it out to the sandbar on a boat and filming it for an art project. He snapped his own photos of the spectacle, which was supposed to be a centerpiece for a music video for his friend, Kolevris-Roots.

"It was so glorious. I just wanted to capture this photogenic scene," Harrington said.

But the curtain has come down on this symphony. The piano was towed away Thursday, but Harrington said it has served its purpose.

And this might not be the last we hear of the artistic teen.

"You never know where the piano will show up next," he said.

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