Press Release - For Immediate Distribution
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Sonny's Piano TV creates "International Piano Idol" on Facebook!
Holbrook, NY December 2011
The votes are tabulated! Sonny's PianoTV "Win A Free Piano Contest" on Facebook has created an international buzz! It's the first time anyone ran a Facebook piano contest completely dependent on fan voting, similar to the many reality shows on TV networks. The difference is there were no celebrity judges and all of the votes were cast by worldwide Facebook fans. Also, all votes were cast based on popularity of the performances not just on who was the best. "The Internet and TV technologies are merging and the Internet gives you instant global access" said Sonny Stancarone, the creator of the contest and owner of SonnysPianoTV.com, an interactive all video website & TV channel that promotes piano playing for health and well being and buys and sells pianos internationally. "I couldn't be selling pianos worldwide without the Internet. I invested in my all video websites and online Piano TV Shows early on, because I saw the potential for growth" said the entrepreneur. Sonny has a worldwide fan base. Votes came in from Saudi Arabia, Japan, Russia, the Philippines, England, Australia, Canada, Italy and other foreign countries, making this truly an international sensation. "It shows just how Facebook can bring people together. It helped us establish a piano community from around the globe." commented Sonny. "It's probably the first time anyone gave away not one, but three pianos to fans. Yes, it's really true we even gave away a Steinway." What's even more exciting is that Sonny's Piano TV will be running more contests very soon. Fans should stay tuned to the website and Facebook page for the announcement of the next "Win A Free Piano Contest" and more piano prizes at www.Facebook.com/SonnysPianoTV.
The success can also be attributed to the fact that it was an exciting race from the get-go with first and second place winners, Pittsburgh PA. native, Sasha Vionov and Darrel Farris of New Orleans, LA. battling it out to the 11th hour. At times, the lead switched hands several times on a daily basis during the 5 week contest as they rallied fan support from around the world. On the last day of voting, Monday, December 19th, Sasha woke up and saw that Darrel was ahead, so he did everything he could to gather up friends and fans to vote. Sasha ended up with 2,541 votes, overtaking Darrel's lead in the final hours. Darrel trailed at 2,435. Sasha exclaimed "When I woke up on Monday, I saw that Darrel was ahead by 60 votes and I started brainstorming on how I could rally more support. I even went into Starbucks and other WiFi locations and had complete strangers voting for me." Sasha Vionov is a classically trained pianist, playing and composing since the age of 5. He made his debut at 13 years old with the world-class Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and has a following of his own. Sasha won the first prize Knabe Baby Grand piano with his performance of "Christmas Fantasy on Frosty" (improvising a number of classical songs into the original version of "Frosty The Snowman"). "It became a tradition for me to compose variations on famous holiday tunes for the holiday season" Sasha wrote as an introduction to his performance. "I want to thank Darrel for making it a fun, fair competition. He made it interesting. I feel gratitude to everyone involved." he said. Sasha is an amazing musician and a mature 14 year old with a bright future ahead of him. You can see Sasha's and all the other contestants videos at "WIN A FREE PIANO" Contest.
Darrel Farris, second place prize winner, complimented Sasha on his playing abilities. "I love pianos and I knew I would never be a Sasha with so much talent, so I've trained as a piano technician to facilitate the beautiful relationship between the piano and it's musician." Darrel called Sonny a "piano angel" and said he was "beside himself" with happiness. Darrel, who won with his beautiful "Nocturne 1er" by Erik Satie, discovered SonnysPianoTV.com years ago and said that Sonny's success at selling pre-owned and rebuilt pianos on the Internet was an inspiration and influenced his decision to become a piano technician. Darrel also expressed his thanks to everyone, and is thrilled to have won the 1870 Steinway, restored and in top condition. In his interview, Darrel mentioned the Steinway & Sons Company had been looking for the oldest Steinway in existence a few years ago and found one from 1863. This piano isn't too far behind.
Third place winners, Jeanie and Mick Lumpp, were able to drive down from their home in the Bronx to Sonny's Piano Warehouse in Holbrook to join in the celebration and see their piano. They won with 1,531 votes, with a version "If I Die Young" in which Jeanie changed the words. "Jeanie is constantly singing and when I heard her singing this song, I said that's the one for Sonny's Piano Contest" commented Mick. Jeanie added "I remember I used to sit and listen to piano music with my poppa. I always wanted a piano as a little girl. He would be very happy for me." In her interview, Jeanie thanked all of her family and friends, here and in her native Philippines, for voting and described Sonny as an inspiration. "You play piano for enjoyment and inspire us to do the same" she said. Mick has played piano since he was 10 and is a member of a successful band, playing at weddings and other events. Jeanie plans on finally taking the piano lessons she's always dreamed about. Their prize is an Aoelian player piano.
When asked what's next for Sonny's PianoTV "Win A Free Piano Contest, Sonny said "We will be running another contest on Facebook shortly but we are exploring morphing the contest into a weekly show on cable or network TV. Piano playing is a universal art form that's very popular and brings people together so why not a kind of Piano Idol Show? The time has come. You can see the current version of Sonny's PianoTV "WIN A FREE PIANO TV SHOW" at http://www.SonnysPianoTV.com/FreePianoContest/.
There were an additional seven runner-ups who will receive a complimentary copy of Sonny's Piano Yoga/Play Piano Instantly DVD kit and a 10% discount on any piano for purchase from Sonny's.
SonnysPianoTV.com is an interactive all video website and TV Channel that promotes piano playing for health and well being and features piano and wellness TV shows, piano playing tips, lessons, a jazz café and Sonny's piano video gallery with new and used pianos for sale. Sonny's Piano TV Company sells and ships pianos nationwide and worldwide.
Sonny is available for TV and radio interviews, and other media appearances.