U.K. Police Seek Identity of Dumbstruck Piano Virtuoso


May 16 (Bloomberg) -- British police are trying to identify an accomplished pianist who hasn't uttered a word since he was found on a beach in the southeastern county of Kent five weeks ago.

The man was found wandering around Sheerness, on the Isle of Sheppey, on April 7, according to a statement on the National Missing Persons Helpline Web site. He was wet ``as if having been in the sea'' and wearing a dark suit and a white shirt.

When hospital staff gave him a pen and pencil in an effort to communicate, the man drew pictures of pianos and a Swedish Flag, the Helpline said.

He was taken to a piano in the Hospital Chapel where ``he played classical music beautifully for four hours,'' Adrian Lowther, spokesman for the West Kent National Health Service and Social Care Trust Hospital, said in a statement.

Police officers who first approached the man found him uncommunicative and frightened, Kent police said in a statement. They took him first to the Medway Maritime Hospital because they believed he was suffering from a mental health problem, police said. The man is described by the Helpline as tall and thin, with short brown hair.

The man was transferred from the Medway to the West Kent Hospital about a week ago to receive specialized care, the police said.

``When he plays, all his anxiety disappears,'' Michael Camp, a care-worker, told the Telegraph newspaper. ``Away from the piano, he starts to breathe very quickly and shies away from people.''

Nicknamed the ``Piano Man'' by British media and ``Mr. X'' by hospital staff, the man is probably English and may have suffered a mental breakdown, the Telegraph said.

Missing Persons case 05-002720, Kent.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Caroline Alexander in London at calexander1@bloomberg.net

Medio: Bloomberg.com
Fecha: Lunes 16 de mayo de 2005
Notas: ©2005 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved.
ID: 2202 Editar

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