Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

Savage Night at the Philharmonic

Tuesday night's New York Philharmonic performance of the Mahler Ninth was stopped dead by an unusual instrument–the iPhone. An iPhone (using the marimba ring-tone) went off repeatedly in the fourth movement of Mahler's final completed symphony…. [New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert] asked the man, sitting in front of the concert-master: "Are you finished?" The man didn't respond.

"Fine, we'll wait," Mr. Gilbert said.

The Avery Fisher Hall audience, ripped in an untimely fashion from Mahler's complicated sound-world, reacted with "seething rage." Someone shouted "Thousand dollar fine." This was followed by cries of "Get out!" and "Kick him out!"

They should have ripped the aging master-of-the-world limb from limb.

20 Comments / Post A Comment

Flashman (#418)

Was the audience referring to the conductor or the guy with the phone?
The article doesn't really make this clear.

deepomega (#1,720)

Crucify him!

ejcsanfran (#489)

@deepomega: He's lucky he wasn't Mahler-ed to death…

camelface (#4,600)

"Yes, I'm familiar with your scene
Some would say shockingly uptight"

Mr. B (#10,093)

I <3 New York.

C_Webb (#855)

@Mr. B I kind of hope a bunch of Philharmonic fans waited for him outside and kicked his ass.

Mr. B (#10,093)

@C_Webb Mmmmmmm, that's the stuff.

whizz_dumb (#10,650)

That sucks.

Despair thy iPhone;
And let the world which thou hast mastered
Tell thee, the Avery Fisher Hall audience was from Mahler's complicated sound-world
Untimely ripp'd.

(With apologies to William S., and iambic pentameter generally.)

I was there. Whoever it was was either really hard of hearing, completely oblivious, or hoping no one noticed. The audience reaction was a little over the top, though.

btw, pretty sure Woody Allen was in the house near the offender. Wonder if he has any opinion on the matter.

Bobby Womack (#4,074)

At least we, the 1% of the 99%, have Awl Music.

dntsqzthchrmn (#2,893)

@Bobby Womack And if we'd signed up for commenter numbers and the newsletter when we first started reading here, we'd have had Awl Music before having to click over to the Observer. [sniff]

Bobby Womack (#4,074)

@dntsqzthchrmn I'm shocked to discover that we are not the 1% of the 99%, but merely the 2-5% of the 99%. Also, not enough SKRILLEX on that thing.

HiredGoons (#603)

Almost as bad as when I was in the final Harry Potter and this woman's phone went off at the climactic duel between Harry Potter and Voldemort, and her ringtone was Peter Gabriel.


The performance was Kaputt.

Niko Bellic (#1,312)

Death metal is not my thing, but if you can't play while being pelted with beer bottles you have no business being on stage.

MusicFilmArt (#204,207)

Another blogger was on the scene last night and posted his experiences and insights here:
quite an amusing account, if not a bit exaggerated.

The inclusion of "marimba ringtone" really pulls this together.

theharpoon (#10,705)

@Nicole Cliffe@facebook It really is an extremely pertinent detail.

scrooge (#2,697)

Most of Mahler could be improved with a little marimba, methinks. At the very least it might relieve the boredom.

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