Image Text (Image to be added later): A piano of the same model as SCP-XXX.
Item #: SCP-XXX
Object Class: Safe
Special Containment Procedures: SCP-XXX is to be contained in a secure, soundproofed room at Site 19, held at a constant 21°C and 42% humidity. In the event that fluctuations in temperature or humidity are detected, all scheduled experiments involving SCP-XXX must be cancelled and the situation reported to Dr. Pleyel, who is the maintenance specialist assigned to SPC-XXX. Use of noise-cancelling headphones is required only for researchers who enter SCP-XXX's chamber with another individual present, and for researches who will be exposed to live audio feeds of SCP-XXX.
Description: SCP-XXX appears to be an ordinary, black upright piano, manufactured by a German piano company which operated out of █████████ from 18██ to 19██. The object is in good condition: its keys are clean and unchipped, and its mechanical components operate cleanly. However, closer inspection reveals a note in German scratched on the inside of the frame, roughly translating to "My life for music, my death for love."
Manifestation of anomalous effects from SCP-XXX requires the presence of both a performer ("the Player") and a live audience ("the Audience") of one or more individuals, all of whom must be capable of hearing SCP-XXX. This means that effects may be transmitted through live broadcasts; recordings played back at a later time, however, will be unremarkable.
While playing SCP-XXX, a Player experiences an extreme intensification of the emotional and/or dramatic qualities inherent in the music, often to the point of feeling "present" at a depicted scene or event. All of the Player's senses are influenced, and despite strong sensations of fear or pain, the Player continues to perform, transfixed, until the music ends. Members of the Audience, in contrast, undergo what might be roughly termed a "flipped" version of the Player's perceptions. Research is currently underway to determine the specific ways in which the experiences of the Player and Audience differ.
Wrong notes and other defects in a performance seem to have little effect on the magnitude of SCP-XXX's influence, meaning its effects may be evoked even if pieces are read with little or no preparation (although the Player must still have adequate knowledge of musical notation). However, faster performances are more potent, though often less accurate. SCP-XXX must be kept as closely in tune as possible, as deviations have resulted in chronic auditory hallucinations and/or temporary deafness.
Generally, music in major keys gives the Player "positive" emotions, while. Music not in a major or minor key, including music in two or more keys or in no key at all (i.e. "atonal"), yields unpredictable results due to the volatile and varying nature of those "sound worlds." For more information, see the testing logs below.
Discovery: On 07/06/20██, Foundation agents were alerted to reports of abnormally violent brawls and multiple unexplained suicides in the area of ██████, Germany, population ████. Interrogations of local residents led agents to a pub, whose owner revealed that a new piano had recently been installed. A physical inspection was made, but nothing out of the ordinary was found. Agent ███████, an amateur pianist, used SCP-XXX to give a performance of Debussy's "Claire de Lune," which depicts a picturesque moonlit tableau - other agents present immediately became violently ill. The object was confiscated, and Class-B amnesiacs were administered to the local population. Later testing has confirmed SCP-XXX's unusual nature. The item is believed to have originally belonged to █████ █████, a prominent figure in the Romantic Era of music. Why no reports of behavior related to SCP-XXX from █████'s lifetime exist is currently unknown.
Testing Log for SCP-XXX
Procedure: Subject seated at SCP-XXX, instructed to play a Sonata in D Major by Mozart.
Results: Nothing out of the ordinary. Subject completed performance and exhibited no conspicuous changes in mental state.
Note: Nothing? Hm, that's odd. Are you sure Agent ███████'s playing isn't just that terrible? - Dr. Kimball
Subjects: D-XXX-01, D-XXX-02
Procedure: Same as Test XXX-01, but with D-XXX-02 seated in the same room as Audience.
Results: D-XXX-01 became exceedingly cheerful following performance, noting a strong desire to continue playing; D-XXX-02, however, became melancholy and exhibited symptoms of moderate clinical depression. Both subjects returned to normal after a period of roughly four (4) days.
Note: It must take someone listening for this thing to work. Could it do the same thing if we had someone listening remotely? - Dr. Kimball
Subjects: D-XXX-01, D-XXX-02
Procedure: First subject instructed to perform the same Mozart sonata, while second subject listened in a separate soundproofed room. First subject appeared frustrated over only being allowed to play a single piece, and played much faster than in the previous two experiments.
Results: D-XXX-01 entered into a state of mania, and had to be forcibly removed from SCP-XXX's chamber after attempting to continue playing. He returned to a normal psychological state after ten (10) days of confinement. In contrast, subject D-XXX-02 developed severe depression and made several attempts at suicide. D-XXX-02 was not making progress toward recovery at the time of his termination, eighteen (18) days later.
End of current draft
Future ideas for testing:
Performance: Subject exposed to a performance of ██████████ by Bela Bartok, a work in two simultaneous keys (A-flat major and E minor).
Performance: Subject exposed to a performance of "Variations for Piano" by Anton Webern, a "twelve-tone" work with no tonal center.
Performance: Subject exposed to a performance of "Dynamic Motion" by Henry Cowell, a work involving explosive, dissonant chords which require the performer to play with the arm.