a man playing the piano

Can Kelsey Grammer Play The Piano?

Kelsey Grammer, most famously known for his 20-year role as Frasier Crane on Cheers, and the subsequent spin-off shows, is a man of many talents. Not only is he an actor, but also a director, producer, and singer. This leaves many people wondering, what can’t he do?

There may be one thing — and that’s playing the piano. Does he actually know how to play the piano, or is it a ruse?

Grammer Playing the Piano on Frasier

Grammer can be seen playing the piano in several scenes from Frasier. The most compelling scene is in the beginning of season 2 episode 15. Frasier realizes he is alone, slowly slinks over to the piano and taps several keys, then gets swept away and starts playing and singing Great Balls of Fire” by Jerry Lee Lewis.

Although convincing in the beginning of the scene, when the song picks up the beat, it is clear that Frasier is merely pretending to press the keys.

The few other scenes where Frasier appears to be playing the piano are extremely short and hard to identify if it is real or not.

Grammer Playing the Piano on a Comedy Show

On a Just For Laughs show in Montreal, Grammer plays a rendition of Slim Gaillard’s “Laughing in Rhythm.” He sat at the piano and sang, while occasionally playing the piano. It was not particularly long or groundbreaking, but you can tell that Grammer is indeed playing the piano.

His Musical Background

Kelsey Grammer was born in Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. His mother, Sally Grammer, was a singer and actress, and his father, Frank Allen Grammer Jr., was a musician. From the beginning of his life, Kelsey was surrounded by musical talent.

The first school Grammer attended was Pine Crest School, a private preparatory school in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It was there that he first began to sing and perform on stage. After that, he attended The Juilliard School, a prestigious performing arts conservatory. Grammer left Juilliard after only two years and started dabbling in the theatre world before landing his role on Cheers.

With a heavy background in the arts, it’s safe to assume he may have learned to play the piano at one point.

If He Can Play, Why Would He Fake It?

He has been seen on multiple occasions not sincerely playing the piano. That may simply be because he does not expand in his music selections. In an interview with Classic FM’s Charlotte Green, he told her that he doesn’t have much time for the music of today, although he did love ‘grunge’ – bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam.

His first loves were Bach, Beethoven, Haydn and Brahms. “I connected to their music in a way that it moved me and so it became important to me,” Grammer said.

So, Does He Actually Play the Piano?

Despite several instances where he is not actually playing, there have been other moments where he is genuinely playing. He admits in an interview that he plays several musical instruments including trombone, flute, clarinet, and piano but “none of them well.” He said,

The piano is probably my best instrument. It’s contemplative for me. It’s an avocation, rather than anything I make a living out of, I love it.

The final verdict coming from Grammer himself, that he can play the piano.


Yes, Kelsey Grammer does play the piano, but more at an amateur level for his personal enjoyment. He grew up around music and is not shy to display what skill he does have with the piano.

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  • Kamryn is a freelance writer and marketer based out of Virginia Beach, VA. She graduated from James Madison University with a degree in Media Arts and Design, and Writing. She loves pop culture, fitness, and margaritas. When she’s not watching Bravo, she’s at the beach with her two dogs.

1 thought on “Can Kelsey Grammer Play The Piano?”

  1. Hi,
    I saw a video of Kelsey Grammer playing the trombone in the Charley Barnett Band in a number called “Skyliner”. Can’t be a so-so musician to be in that band. Problem is I can’t locate that video again.
    Andy Ong – Singapore

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