October 18th, Yorktown 2017 - Lafayette Statue Unveiling, Lectures, & Dinners - Stop #2: What a day! Non-stop and entirely engaging. A whirlwind of historical discussion with brilliant, incredibly accommodating people who love Lafayette!
New Lafayette Statue Unveiling!
Meeting Gilbert du Plessis de Lafayette (I believe it was ‘du Plessis’…not certain), ancestor of Our Dear Marquis. You can see the resemblance!
Meeting Alan Hoffman, author of Lafayette in America in 1824 and 1825: Journal of a Voyage to the United States…one of my most frequently referenced books, and President of the American Friends of Lafayette. This man is incredibly knowledgeable, has a wonderful sense of humor, and is genuinely passionate about Lafayette. It was an honor.
Meeting Chuck Schwam, Organizer of the American Friends of Lafayette…a real character, zealous, charismatic. Join the Friends. I think I can safely venture to include him when I say WE WANT YOU.
Fife and drums signalling dinner!
A delightful and nostalgic visit by Williamsburg’s very own Lafayette.
Mark Schneider has played Lafayette for over 10 years now and is one of the reasons I became a history major. I was thrilled when Mark rode up on his charger during a trip to Williamsburg. I had to have been 12. But visiting with him at such a pivotal age really put history in a tangible light. It was a true pleasure to meet him again and thank him.
“The bill at Juilliard was a performance of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” featuring words, of course, by William Shakespeare, and music by Felix Mendelssohn. Bathed in blue light and sharing the stage at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater were conductor Alan Gilbert, the Julliard Orchestra, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus and Juilliard grads Gabriel Ebert (“Matilda”) and Phillipa Soo (“Hamilton”)
Ms. Soo, as the fairy queen Titania, read the words “Hand in hand with fairy grace/We will sing and bless this place.” That was the evening in a nutshell, encapsulating the desire to preserve, uphold and support this young community of artists, with the money raised going to student scholarships.”
‘Adagio for Strings’ for Orlando Victims Last Night
The New York Philharmonic dedicated the June 15, 2016 concert, which opened the Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, to the victims of the recent tragedy in Orlando and their families. In addition to addresses from the stage, the free concert opened with a performance of Barber’s “Adagio for Strings,” conducted by Music Director Alan Gilbert, in tribute to the victims.
Adam Lambert // Adam Leber // Adam Levin // Akiva Schaeffer // Alan Gilbert // Alanis Morisette // Alex Pall // Alicia Keys // Andrew Bird // Andy Samberg // Angel Coleman // Avery Lipman // Barbra Streisand // Beck // Bill Kreutzman // Billy Joel // Bo Koster // Bob Weir // Bonnie Raitt // Boyd Muir // Brad Delson // Bradford Cobb // Brandon Creed // Brendon Urie // Britney Spears // Butch Walker // Calvin Harris // Cam // Cameron Strong // Carl Broemel // Carole King // Casey Harris // Charlie Puth // Charlie Walk // Cher // Chester Bennington // Christina Aguilera // Christina Perri // Conan O'Brien // Courtney Love // Craig Kallman // Cindy Lauper // Dan McCarroll // Daniel Ek // Daniel Glass // Danny Bennett // Demi Lovato // Diplo // Doug Morris // Drew Taggart // Eddie Vedder // Elle King // Ellen Degeneres // Elvis Costello // Emily Robinson // Eric Hutchinson // Fher Olvera // Glenn Kotche // Gregory Porter // Halsey // Iggy Pop // Irving Azoff // Jack Antonoff // Jackson Browne // James Corden // Jason Kupperman // Jason Mraz // Jay Marziano // Jean-Michel Jarre // Jeff Ament // Jeff Chimenti // Jeff Tweedy // Jeffrey Harleston // Jennifer Lopez // Jeremy Zimmer // Jim James // Joan Jett // Jody Gerson // Joe Hahn // Joe Jonas // John Esposito // Joe Janick // John Mellencamp // Jorge Hernandez // Josh Groban // Julia Michaels // Julia Greenwald // Justin Tranter // K. D. Lang // Kaskade // Katy Perry // Kelly Rowland // Kesha // Kevin Liles // Kid Cudi // L. A. Reid // Lady Gaga // Lerace // Lee Daniels // Lin-Manuel Miranda // Sir Lucian Grainge // Lyor Cohen // Macklemore // Marc Geiger // Mark Pinkus // Mark Ronson // Martie Maguire // Martin Bandied // Martin Erlichman // Martin Kirkup // Matisyahu // Matt Cameron // Meghan Trainor // Melissa Etheridge // Michael Bublé // Michael Rapino // Michael Stripe // Michele Anthony // Michelle Jubelirer // Mickey Hart // Mikael Jorgenson // Mike Caren // Mike D // Mike Dungan // Mike McCready // Mike Shinoda // Monte Lipman // Natalie Maines // Nate Reuss // Nick Jonas // Nicky Jam // Pasquale Rotella // Pat Monahan // Pat Sansone // Patrick Hallahan // Paul McCartney // Pete Wentz // Peter Edge // Peter Tork // Phil McIntyre // Prince Royce // Pusha T // Questlove // Ricky Martin // Ringo Starr // Rivers Cuomo // Rob Bourdon // Rob Light // Rob Thomas // Roger Gold // Rosanne Cash // Rufus Wainwright // Russel Simmons // Ryan Leslie // Ryan Lewis // Sam Gores // Sam Harris // Sara Bareilles // Scooter Braun // Scott Borchetta // Selena Gomez // Shakira // Sia // Stephen Cooper Steve Barnett // Steve Bartels // Steve Jensen // Steve Levin // Stevie Knicks // Sting // Stone Gossard // Stu Bergen // Talib Kweli // Terence Blanchard // Thom Yorke // Todd Moscowitz // Tom Blankenship // Tom Corson // Tom Windish // Tony Bennett // Tori Amos // Trent Reznor // Troye Sivan // Vic Mensa // Wayne Coyne // Yoko Ono // Zayn Malik
Baltimore passed it’s 300th killing in the city. People
will use this figure to continuously dump on the city, blaming everyone
they can think of for its crime and violence, but they’ll forget one
thing: 300 is not just a number.
Here are the names of everyone killed within the city limits so far this year:
Karim Bonner, Josphat Kobia, Leon Fleming, Matthew Thomas, Brian Chase,
John Walsh, Robert Thomas, Troy Preston, Darius White, Anthony
Richardson, Troy Pinkney, Donte Downer, David Hall, Harry Smith, Jason
Ballard, Dashawn Allbrook, Marlon Harvey, Davon Johnson, Stephen
Foreman, James Smith, Stephen Vaise, Victor Underwood Black, Marvin
Barrett, Tavares Swinson, Derrick Dargan, John Imbragulio, James
Williams, James Maurice Edward Jr., Malik Fuller, Unidentified Man,
Kevin Mason, Jawan Goode, Leedell Brown, Owen Crayton, Anthony Reese,
Dwayne Reid, Markez Jones, Djuan Tillett, Tameka Mobley, Terrell
Walston, Davon Jordan, Alton Wallace III, Daniel Brooks, Sterling Day,
Jarrell Hicks, Andre Robinson, Travis Dixon, Victor Gwaltney III,
Kemmontay Mitchell, Jeremy Ward, Felicity Shelton, Carla Harrison,
Steven Jackson, Jamar Green, Tyrone Damon, Tywaun Short, Billy Vines,
Kevin Hill, Mark Nicholson, Jamal Rosebourgh, Troy Palmer, Carvell
Jones, Nicole Torain, Reanna Greene, Daquain Tate, Tierell Wilder,
Kareem George, Tyleah Fenwick, Martin Brooks, Ricky Chambers Jr., Andre
Hunt, Davon William Johnson, James Maurice Johnson, Freddie Gray, Yogesh
Sheth, Byron Showell, Khai Hebron, Jorvon Beatty, Keith Watts, Rodney
Vandette Johnson, Melissa Anne Bingham, Armand Parrine, Paul Smith, Ivan
McBroom, Matthew Hughes, Harry Davis, Odell Stewart, Louis Hicks, Tahil
Yasin, Shawn Scott, Tiffany Chisholm, Wade Purvey Jr., Eric Diggs Jr.,
Shawn Hickman, Kelvin Warfield, Melody Johnson, Michael Smith, Jarmar
James, Darell Alston, Charles Adams, Tyrin Diggs, Hassan Fields, James
Mckoy, Bruce Fleming Jr., Umika Smith, Charles Jackson Jr., Shaquil
Hinton, Charles Dobbins, Keith Leon Booze, Jennifer Jeffrey, Kester
Browne, Eladio Bennett, Justin Mensupha-Bey, Ronnie Thomas III, Kevin
Hart Jr., Terrell Patterson, Tony Moody, Gerald Smith, Jerod Richardson,
Montez Parker, Tyrone Hamber, Calvin Bryant, Malcolm Alonzo Rodgers,
Kevin Jones, Arnesha Bowers, Ronnie Walden, Elery Hudson, Andrew Powell,
Antoine Johnson, Jamon Corprew, Curtis D. Mitchell, Jerome J. Grant,
Steven L. Bass, Michael S. Montgomery, Pernell Morris, Henry MacArthur,
Bernard Dorsey, Alan Durant Gilbert, Leasia Carter, Cory Turman, Tommy
David Thomas, Marcus Warren, Jose Alejandro Cartagena, Brian Augins,
Ivan J. Cox Jr., Nathaniel Wheeler Jr., Josh Remus Burnett, Keith
Glascoe, Edward Burroughs, Derwin Jones, John F. Davis, Lamont Randall
Jr., Gerald Thompson, Jaqueline Parker Antonio Anderson, Eric Forrester,
Gary Jackson, Gregory Higgins, James Ricardo Smith, Tyrell Hardy,
Darrius Johnson, Dante Barnes, Marvin Coston Jr., Frederick S. Taylor,
Steven Justin Lewis, Tyrone Johnson, Robert Lee Jackson, Ronald Davon
Penn, Terron Singleton, Damon Tisdale, Delvin Trusty, Shyteak Lawrence,
Albert Mullen, Sina Masoodi, Raja’ee Naneem Sincere, Jefferson Bolden,
Clerow Myers III, Daquan Mason, Damon L. Ramsey, Charles Diggs,
Jaswinder Singh, Marcus Downer, Michael Polston, Franklin Grayson, Lorad
C. Warner, Marquis Tisdale, Teon Simms, Jermaine Mitter, Donte Dixon
Jr., Gregory Tynes, Terrence Boyd, Alvin Phillips, Darod Rosenburough,
La Tonya Denise Battle, Tranell Dansbury, Robert Mullins, Christopher
Giles, Steven Krug, Jerome Smith, Dontaye McDaniel, David Lamont Nolan,
Sheldon Eubanks, Timothy Francher, Franklin Morris, Tyrik Adams,
Marquise Caldwell, Melvin Heckstell, Kevin Carey, Paul Passley, Brandon
Smith, Angelo Yancy, Richard Dabbs Jr., Thelonious Monk, Jason Summers,
Raykwon Young, Darryl Wyche, Keenan Stanfield, Kevin Gray, Kevin Lyde,
Ryan Mims, Michael Thompson, Daymar Rogers, Tyvonte Worrell, Theophilus
Ruffin, Keith Gale, Antoine Smith, Kason Williams, Lamont Montague,
Terry Whittaker, Stonie Baker, Romel Simms, Kirk Butler, Thomas Meehan,
Michael Nichols, Troy Mitter, Darris Darnell Davis, Tondayo Johnson,
Pierre Epps-Hamilton, Dante Lamont Barnes, Diane Griffin, Antonio
McNeil, Cecil Harris, Kevin Cannady, Christina Gowran, Rayshawn Jones,
Amir Billings, Tayvon Wilson, Juanito Mosquita, Brian Johnson, Kevin
White, Deyquawn Cooper, Gordon Williams, James Gaylord, Ronald Stewart,
Ryan Green, Noran Torbet, Wendell Taylor, Levar Round, James Anderson,
Yeison Carreto-Guttierrez, Eigene Nesbitt, Keon Smith, Tabitha Holton,
Markel Benson, Avery Kelly, Terrell Jones, Terrance Johnson, Andre Clark
Jr., Dorian Pate Jr., Angel Powell, Kelavin Weaver, David Brown,
Maurice Swilling, Daniel Blackston, Andrew Mack, Travon Venable, Calvin
Ellis, Dustin Howes, Larry McDaniels, Damien Best, Matthew Kirsch,
Monard Holeman Jr., Quentin Heard, Anthony Rucker, Dominic Walker,
Quantaz Christian, Dale Abrams, Earl Keith Burton, Darryl Whitehead,
James Dews, Lerell McBride, Robert Joseph Adams, Trevon Joyner, David
Nance, David Moore, Kendal Fenwick, Gerald Stokes, Jaquan Holt,
Unidentified Man, Tavon Allen, Unidentified Man, and Unidentified Man.
This evening (because evidently I have finally made the crossover to snooty-elitist-sophisticated New Yorker) I attended the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center. I am currently enrolled in a Music of New York class and we are focusing on the composer Gustav Mahler, whose 9th symphony was to be performed tonight. I am a film major and I am used to learning and creating visually, so the experience of going to the symphony, where the stimulation was to be entirely auditory was to be a new experience for me. I also understood the prestige of Lincoln Center and the proper etiquette that would be required at the symphony so I made sure to dress up and look like a well adjusted classy young gentleman when I showed up to the venue.
Lincoln Center did not disappoint, it was a grand venue with all the classy, sophisticated trappings such as $4 bottles of water and tuxedoed ushers that make you know you’re somebody when you walk through.
As we took our seats for the start of the show (can you call a symphony a show? A concert? I really have no idea) and the lights went down, the smooth, calming voice of Alec Baldwin came over the speakers and reminded us all to please turn our cell phones off “out of respect for the musicians and your fellow audience members.” I reached into my pocket and turned my phone to silent. Then, in a rare moment of paranoid OCD, I checked that it was on vibrate about 5 separate times over the next few minutes. Had this been a movie, this would have been what we in the film business would call “foreshadowing.”
The symphony began under the expert direction of conductor Alan Gilbert and soon I was caught up in the music, marveling at how engaged I was in spite of the fact that there was nothing to see and not even tangible lyrics to hear, but my experience as a film person experiencing the symphony is a topic for another post. This post is about what happened towards the end of the performance…
In the last movement, right as the piece was building to its big finish, somewhere, in the left front area of the auditorium, someone’s iphone began to go off. Alec Baldwin had asked us so nicely to turn them off and yet someone had not heeded his call! Some terrible soul had forgotten and was now disturbing the performance! Luckily, the music was building and so the ringer was drowned out by the instruments. I think we all hoped that the call would end and that would be the end of it. Oddly enough though, the ringer persisted, consistently for a good 5 or so minutes. Every so often, Alan Gilbert would give the slightest glance in the direction of the ringer as he conducted.
Another few minutes passed and still the ringer persisted, we were getting to a point in the piece where it was very quiet, with only some violins and a few wind instruments playing. It was supposed to be a quiet moment before the big finale and this persistent iphone ring was ruining the entire aesthetic of the piece. Finally, in a move that shocked the whole venue, Gilbert put down his baton and signaled the players to stop. The audience was dead silent for a moment, save of course for the terrible sound of the ringing phone. Then, suddenly there was the sound of a great shifting and rumbling as every single person in the hall reached for their pockets and made sure their phones were off. And still, the phone continued to ring.
“We’ll wait.” Gilbert said, sounding more like a chastising kindergarten teacher than a conductor. Myself and those around me cringed in embarrassment, both for ourselves and the nameless dolt who had forgotten to go to vibrate.
Gilbert continued to stare in the direction of the ringer, that was still ringing!
“Turn off the phone.” He said sternly.
Still the phone continued to ring. How was this even possible?
(My theory is the offending phone’s owner fell asleep during the performance, had set an alarm on his phone and forgotten to turn it off, and left his ringer on, leading to this perfect storm of social elite faux pa)
Whatever the reason, the phone kept on ringing.
This is when things started to get interesting…
“Get out!” came an angry call from one of the balconies. Call is a nice way of putting it, this shout was almost more of a growl than coherent words.
“Shut it off!” Came another voice.
The aggression and anger in the voices of these people was palpable. Soon, a whole chorus of “Turn off the phone!” and “Throw them out!” was rising from around me in the auditorium.
I can’t describe the tension in that room and possibly do it justice, The way the people were shouting made it seem like they were calling for the phone’s owner’s head on a platter. They wanted blood! This crowd of largely elderly, well dressed, seemingly cultured and sophisticated people were shouting and screaming like a group of island natives demanding a sacrifice.
And still the phone kept ringing.
The calls got louder, there was a sense of movement in the sector the phone was coming from. What were those people preparing to do?
And still it kept ringing.
Finally, finally finally, mercifully, it stopped.
“Is it gonna go off again?” Alan Gilbert asked. I guess the answer was no because Gilbert then turned to the rest of us and said “Normally, when such a disturbance comes up during a performance, the thing to do is to ignore it but this was so egregious that I had no choice but to stop. I apologize.”
At this point the place erupted in thunderous, intense, aggressive applause. This ovation was louder than the one when he eventually finished the piece later on. Some people gave a standing ovation.
This got me thinking. Did the crime of the phone going off really match the response it got? Granted, it was annoying and embarrassing for us in the audience and I think Alan Gilbert did the right thing by stopping the show, but I was perplexed at the response of the crowd as a whole.
Whoever had owned the phone had made an honest mistake, one that just about anyone else in the audience could possibly have made, yet here, at Lincoln Center, listening to The Symphony, this violation was enough to draw the ire and ill will of hundreds of people. Sophisticated people who had come for a night of culture and music and proceeded to be reduced, for a few moments, to the early stages of an angry mob.
In the name of keeping with the etiquette of this classy and cultured event, these people got so worked up they were actually shouting, not cursing mind you, for that would be uncultured, but shouting angrily. And when Gilbert finally dealt with the situation, the response was the cathartic release of pent up aggression. Blatant, almost animal aggression, at the symphony, over a ringing phone. Maybe I’m new to the whole symphony culture but to me it seemed a bit much.
I’ve been in shows with talking audience members and other disturbances, I know how obnoxious it can be and how its completely unacceptable to do, it just seemed like the response in this case went so much farther than what was called for. As Gilbert said, it was egregious, but it wasn’t horrific, or say “terrible."
Had this been a comedy sketch or a scene in some surreal movie, I could have seen things playing out with the phone continuing to ring and the well dressed patrons around the iphone owner finally turning on him and going totally primal. They’d attack him brutally, smashing both him and the phone to bits. Gilbert would get in on it, jumping down from the stage and using that sharp baton of his to do god knows what. The iphone owner would be given a "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” style punishment (for those who haven’t read or seen it, a. you totally should and b, it involves forceful tattooing a descriptive phrase, but I’ll let you figure it out for yourself!) and finally, after the iphone owning pig would be strung up for all to see, the sophisticated folks would readjust their jackets, make themselves look presentable and continue, having saved the symphony from the barbaric savagery of a ringing phone.
Gilbert would fix his hair, wipe some of the blood off his suit and turn to the crowd saying something like “So uncivilized,” would receive a standing ovation and would then continue on with the conclusion of Mahler’s 9th.
Now that’s just the imagined scenario of this film/comedy student. Fortunately things didn’t escalate further than they did but that was only because the phone finally stopped ringing. Who knows what would have happened if it had kept going…
All in all a nice, cultured evening. Great music, intense drama (both musically and otherwise) and some food for thought. What is acceptable to do in the name of keeping things civilized and honoring etiquette? Is it possible to go too far? I think so, and I think the crowd tonight came close.
(Oh, and Mr. Gilbert, I mean no disrespect in my hypothetical scenario, I believe you handled the situation the best way possible and conducted a hell of a show otherwise.)
Never a dull moment, can’t wait ‘til I hit up the ballet and we get a streaker!