What This Italian Pianist Did To Protect The Arctic Is Stunning [Video]

Italian pianist Ludovico Einaudi cares a lot about climate change and Arctic protection, and his latest demonstration was stunning, even a little frightening. Einaudi is the mind behind famous film scores and the music featured in trailers, including The Intouchables and I’m Still Here, but his latest work was done with Greenpeace.

To bring attention to Arctic preservation, Ludovico Einaudi played one of his original compositions there. More specifically, he played on a floating platform in Norway among the Arctic ice as pieces of the Wahlenbergbreen glacier crashed into the ocean in the background.

The piece is called Elegy for the Arctic, and the concert was organized by Greenpeace. The environmental organization explained on its website that the pianist was performing with the eight million voices that are calling for protection for the region.

“Ludovico Einaudi has turned eight million voices into music, Elegy for the Arctic, specially composed to help protect what we love. As he performed this piece for the first time — in front of a magnificent surging glacier — the music echoed across the ice, a moment that will remain in our minds forever.”

Climate change has left the Arctic region vulnerable. As the ice melts, the area becomes a new opportunity for drilling oil, creating a new push for exploration from certain companies. Greenpeace intends to do everything possible to stop what they call exploitation, which will likely lead to more climate change. In addition to containing fossil fuels, the northern ice helps regulate the climate.

Einaudi concert is timed to draw attention to an important vote.

The OSPAR Commission, an intergovernmental organization of 15 countries that acts to protect northeastern marine environments, will meet in Tenerife, Spain, and discuss a safeguard that could protect 10 percent of the Arctic Ocean (which is an area roughly the size of the U.K.). Greenpeace claims that the Arctic Ocean remains the least protected marine environment in the world and is already threatened by further climate change.

OSPAR was formed around the idea of marine protection, but Greenpeace believes that this upcoming meeting will be tough. They claim Norway, Denmark, and Iceland are listening to corporate drilling interests rather than climate change protesters. The northern European states have a big influence on issues in their nearby ocean, but the environmental organization hopes they’ll see the long-term value of a protected marine environment.

“Until they change their view, those who would risk the Arctic should not be heard over those calling to protect what we love, not over Ludovico’s music, not over the piano and the glacier, not over eight million voices.”

Sea levels continues to rise because of global warming and polar ice melt, putting Florida's coastal cities at risk. [Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]
Sea levels continue to rise because of global warming and polar ice melt, putting Florida’s coastal cities at risk. [Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]
Fighting for the region’s ecological health will be tough, but so was setting up the concert. CBC reports that the floating platform consists of 300 wooden triangles. The total thing weighs roughly two tons. Getting a grand piano onto the artificial iceberg probably wasn’t all that easy, either.

Einaudi released a statement on the demonstration against climate change and Arctic exploitation, calling the concert a great experience.

“Being here has been a great experience. I could see the purity and fragility of this area with my own eyes. It is important that we understand the importance of the Arctic, stop the process of destruction and protect it.”

Climate change also threatens the marine animals in the area, including polar bears and narwhals. The ocean is now more open to unsustainable fishing as well.

The Greenpeace petition to protect the Arctic sea is online here.

[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]

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