Shouldn't we already know this? Let's review...
by Loren A. Roberts (guru of multi-hyphenate media)
Quick mini-rant here today, because I attended an otherwise-wonderful performance at the Pasadena Symphony this weekend. It was a textbook case of what not to do at a show:
- When they get on the P.A. before the show and tell you to turn your cell phone off before the performance, it's not a guideline -- it truly kills the moment when your cell phone goes off right when the clarinet is hitting that transcendent high note. Turn the friggin' cell phone off. If you're too important to turn your cell phone off, you probably can afford to have the Symphony play at your private residence so you can answer the phone without disrupting our enjoyment of the show.
- When you bring children to a performance of any kind, go over the rules with them beforehand: no talking. No Gum Chewing and popping bubblegum. (Really!???!) No opening a bag of chips during the show. (Really!?!) Put the program down on the floor so that the kid is not rustling the papers through the whole performance.
- Even if the venue is not completely full, find your seat number and sit in it. Don't assume that you can sit anywhere. Unfortunately, right before the show starts, you are going to have to move because you are in someone else's seats.
- I have experienced many different parts of the world (including here in L.A.), and I love smells. But I don't love smells that I can't get away from, and I have family members who are allergic. If you're going to be sitting next to me, please shower, make sure that the coat you only wear once a year doesn't smell like mothballs, and go light on the perfume/cologne. Pleeeease!
There are plenty of concert/theatre etiquette lists online [here, here, and here are a few]. Make yourself and all of your friends aware of them, and let's make the show wonderful for everyone involved.
LOREN A. ROBERTS produces films, videos and music, designs magazines and logos, plays and sings in a rock-and-roll tribute band, and is a student of what happens when science and technology and the arts and culture collide. www.hearkencreative.com
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