Violinist in the Metro – do we perceive beauty?

one of my favorite stories:

A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the
 violin; it was a cold January morning.

He played six Bach pieces for about
45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour,
it was calculated that
thousands of people went through the station, most of them on their way to

Three minutes went by and a middle aged man noticed there was a musician
He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried
up to meet his schedule.

A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw
the money in the till and without stopping continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but
 the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late
for work.

The one who paid the most attention was a 3 year old boy. His mother tagged
him along, hurried but the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally the
mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk turning his head all the
This action was repeated by several other children. All the parents,
 without exception, forced them to move on.

In the 45 minutes the musician played, only 6 people stopped and stayed for
a while.
About 20 gave him money but continued to walk their normal pace. He
collected $32.

When he finished playing and silence took over, no one
 noticed it. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the best
musicians in the world.
He played one of the most intricate pieces ever
written with a violin worth 3.5 million dollars.

Two days before his playing in the subway, Joshua Bell sold out at a theater
in Boston and the seats average $100.

Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the
Washington Post as part of an social experiment about perception, taste and
 priorities of people.
The outlines were: in a commonplace environment at an
 inappropriate hour: Do we perceive beauty?
Do we stop to appreciate it? Do
we recognize the talent in an unexpected context ?

One of the possible conclusions from this experience could be:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians
in the world playing the best music ever written, how many other things are
 we missing?

Vorheriger Beitrag
Vom Gruppendruck in der Schule zur Armut!?
Nächster Beitrag
Tränen des Glücks – ein Brief an eine Mitarbeiterin