What Would You Have Done?
From the Washington Post, via Miss Snark, comes this fascinating experiment: what happens when an amazingly talented, critically praised, world reknown classical violinist -- who rates standing ovations in concert halls around the globe -- performs for 43 minutes in a subway station during a Friday morning rush hour in Washington DC? On a Stradivarius, no less.
The article is long but wonderful to read, and it includes discussions of art, music, context and perception, along with four separate video snippets from the performance/experiment. The results were sad, if not predictable.
I'd like to think that if I had been there I would have stopped (especially for the Bach) and listened. At the end of the piece I would have applauded loudly and shouted "Bravo!" a couple of times, not caring about the opinions of the anonymous commuters flowing around me. One fact of life in suburbia is that the music of my commute issues from the car radio. I only encounter street musicians on vacation, so when I do it's not in the context of the everyday hustle and bustle. Still, I would like to think that I would have noticed. What about you?