108-year-old pianist doesn't let age stop her playing

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on June 5, 2019 - Duration: 01:39s

108-year-old pianist doesn't let age stop her playing

As Wanda Zarzycka's fingers move over the keys, the lines on her hands are the only thing betraying her age.

Roselle Chen reports.

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108-year-old pianist doesn't let age stop her playing

(SOUNDBITE) (Polish) 108-YEAR-OLD POLISH PIANIST, WANDA ZARZYCKA, SAYING: "My name's Wanda Zarzycka.

I suppose I'm 108 years old.

Only." As Zarzycka's fingers move over the piano keys, the lines on her hands are the only thing betraying her age.

She's one of Poland's oldest and most talented residents, and fell in love with music as a young girl.

Zarzycka graduated from Lviv's music conservatory in 1931, but when World War II broke out, she was forced to stop playing.

(SOUNDBITE) (Polish) 108-YEAR-OLD POLISH PIANIST, WANDA ZARZYCKA, SAYING: "There was rain falling on the piano because we didn't have a place to hide it, so we kept it in a shed in the countryside.

So after, I stopped playing for five years." The piano was brought to Krakow in 1944, five years after Zarzycka's family fled there from Lviv, which was then a Polish city occupied by the Soviet army.

The piano is Zarzycka's most valuable possession, passed down to her from her mother.

Despite breaking her hands when she was 80 and being told by doctors that she would never play the piano again, the energetic 108-year-old continues to play daily.

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