Monday, April 09, 2007

Famed Violinist Goes Incognito on the DC Subway

What would happen if one of the world's great violinists performed incognito before a traveling rush-hour audience of 1,000-odd people in a subway station?

No one knew it, but on January 12 the violinist standing against a bare wall outside a Washington, D.C. Metro station in an indoor arcade at the top of the escalators was one of the finest classical musicians in the world, playing some of the most elegant music ever written on one of the most valuable violins ever made. His performance was arranged by The Washington Post as an experiment in context, perception and priorities -- as well as an unblinking assessment of public taste: In a banal setting at an inconvenient time, would beauty transcend?

Read what happened here.

Maybe to complete the experiment the Washington Post should next arrange for a mediocore street musician to get dressed up in a tuxedo and perform classical music in a concert hall with perfect acoustics, and see if "in an elegant setting at a convenient time, would mediocrity be obvious?"


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