We all attended the Dude’s Minnesota Boychoir holiday concert this afternoon. It was the second of two holiday shows – this one at the Landmark Center in St. Paul.
This performance marked the second in as many shows where talkers interrupted the event for us. On New Year’s Eve we got stuck behind an entire family of talkers at the Children’s Theater production of A Christmas Story. At that event, the kids talked with normal (non-whispering) voices frequently during the show. Grandma would respond to each outburst – also without whispering. It got very annoying. Several times we shushed them – the first time Maria and I both shushed them together – an unplanned, spontaneous show of disapproval. Of course, they didn’t “get it”.
Today at the choir concert, there were 4 people in the row behind us who almost ruined it for those around us. One was an elderly woman in wheel chair. She suffered from some affliction – perhaps Alzheimer’s – that caused her to hum a lot. Amazingly her humming all but disappeared when the boys were singing. However, before the show, and between numbers she hummed and sang softly – yet loud enough to be heard 4 or 5 rows away. I’m giving her a pass on this one, as she seemed to not be able to control herself. Here caretakers were another story.
Her adult helpers took advantage of the snacks provided by Boychoir officials (note to choir – no more potato chips in crunchy bags for God’s sake!). It was half-way through the show before the two chip eaters finished their bags. And of course – they talked a lot during the show. Last but not least, one’s cell phone went off towards the end of the show.
Shana got up and moved after the first number, but Maria and I stuck it out for some reason.
I recall years ago reading letters-to-the-editor from disgruntled Orchestra patrons about folks who dared open a cough drop during a performance. I thought those folks were a bunch of nuts and I vowed never to be so strict. However, I think it’s time to get a back-bone. A cough-drop wrapper would be great – at least it implies the person is attempting to control a cough. What’s with the talking – with barely attempt to do it quietly in a whisper? At the Children’s Theater I wanted to shout out – “Do you know how much these tickets cost!” or “You are not all sitting around at home watching a movie – there are other people here!”
I think I’ve reached my limit – woe unto the next person who even clears their throat.
P.S. Shana and kids just went to see Billy Elliot. Shana shared a similar thought – look out if you are sitting near them and make a peep!