Tuesday, May 24

Who is Piano Man?

This mystery man, nicknamed "Piano Man", was found by two police officers wandering aimlessly near a beach in the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, on April 7.
He is believed to be in his twenties or early thirties and he was wearing a dripping wet black suit and shirt snd tie when he was discovered. All efforts to communicate with the shy and agitated man have failed and since then he hasn't spoken a word to anyone.
He was taken to Little Brook Hospital in Dartford, Kent where he is being cared for, West Kent NHS Trust are legally responsible for his treatment.
Here staff gave him a pen and some paper in the hope he would write his name or draw his country's flag. Instead he drew a highly detailed pictures of a grand piano. Realising that music must be the key to unlock the mystery, social worker Michael Camp took him to the hospital's chapel, which contains a piano. The man sat down at the instrument and began to play. The doctors were amazed at the transformation. For the first time since he had been found he appeared calm and relaxed. He was also a good player and he stunned carers with a four-hour piano recital.
In the following weeks the "piano man" returned regularly to the chapel. He played sections from Swam Lake by Tchaikovsky but most often seemed to prefer to perform his own compositions. He played the piano for three or four hours and he had to be physically removed from it because he refuxed to stop.
Until he is identified he will no doubt continue to play his sad but soothing music to the pleasure of those caring for him and his fellow patients.
Doctors are considering using music and art therapy to try to communicate with the mystery man who expresses himself only through his music and they have installed an upright piano in his room at the secure mental health unit where he is being held.
Some who have heard him believe he may be a professional musician. One theory is that he has suffered a trauma which caused amnesia, one of the methods the mind uses to retreat from a shock. Personal memories can be lost while the ability to communicate -or, for instance, play the piano-is not.
Although more than 1000 people from all over the world have contacted a special helpline and several leads to his identity are being investigated, West Kent NHS Trust have said it may still be "some time" before they know who the mystery man is. The Trust said he is in good physical health but his psychological condition is unlikely to change dramatically in the near future.
His carers have become so desperate to find out who he is and what has happened to him that they have allowed his photograph to be taken in the hope that someone will solve the mystery, a suggestion is that he might have been wearing dark clothes when he was founds because he had been to a funeral.
Anyway, this is a sad case. Clearly there must have been some sort of trauma and it is important to find out what it was.
The Piano Man's story is so intriguing that Hollywood producers are considering making a film about it.

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