MILTON, Ga. — Michael Rainwater, a junior at Milton High School, will showcase his talents at piano on a televised stage to benefit a good cause this weekend. Rainwater was selected to perform in the Tower of Talent program that will premier Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. on 11Alive (WXIA-TV) benefitting the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s Music Therapy Program.
Rainwater said he is thrilled to support the music therapy program, describing it as an “incredible organization.”
“You’re going to hear actual children’s stories who have been impacted by music, and it’s incredible to be a part of this larger-than-life event,” Rainwater said. “Seeing these stories and these kids who were helped by the program and had music inspire them, we really want to push that support. And with coronavirus, this is one of the few fundraising events they will have this year, so there is a big push to raise awareness.”
This year marks the fifth time Rainwater will perform in the Tower of Talent, and his start with the program came by chance.
Five years ago, Rainwater said he sat down to perform on a piano that was on display at Fry’s Electronics in Milton. An agent who listened to him play was so impressed he contacted his friend and colleague, the executive producer of Tower of Talent. Rainwater has performed each year since.
It won’t be the first time the 16-year old will play on a grand stage. Rainwater’s talents have led him to perform at Carnegie Hall, The Cobb Energy Center and other large venues. He was inducted into the Tri-M Music Honor Society and has won first prize in the Crescendo International Piano Competition.
He also recently produced an album, “This is Piano,” that includes eight cover songs of popular music, which he hopes will break down misconceptions about the instrument.
“There are a lot of stereotypes around piano, it’s not just for classical music,” Rainwater said. “It can present things in new ways. They are all cover songs, but people will be hearing them in new ways.”
That’s one draw that keeps Rainwater behind the keys.
“I’ve seen firsthand how people react to the things I’m doing, and it’s really inspiring,” he said. “Getting my music out there and letting people experience something maybe they’ve never heard before and hear new things, that’s what really drives me to spread more music. Access to music is something the world really needs, and that’s another reason I think Children’s [Healthcare of Atlanta] music therapy program is so important.”
The Tower of Talent program premiers Nov. 28 on 11Alive with additional showings Nov. 29 and Dec. 1 at 11 a.m.