Conduct Us

On September 14, 2013, Improv Everywhere, a New York based group that “causes scenes of chaos and joy in public places,” placed a Carnegie Hall orchestra in the middle of the city with an empty podium that read “conduct us.” Random people in New York were able to approach the podium and conduct this world-class orchestra, and the orchestra responded to their conducting. The above video, posted by Improv Everywhere, gives only a brief snippet of what must have been a fantastic day. This event, among all of the other things it does, reminds us that classical music–a medium that is often seen as  inaccessible by modern audiences both because of cost and also because it isn’t as easily relatable as pop music–is something everyone can enjoy and have fun with. But it’s about more than just the fact that classical music can be “fun.” This piece is particularly powerful because it’s a reminder that while we often value technique and skill when we think of classical music, everyone can make music. And music can be an amazing tool for creating community among people in all walks of life. I mean, how many times do you get to see so many different people standing on  New York  street corner smiling, laughing and making music together?

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