My friend Yuri had a birthday this weekend. I told him I’d take him out. Sometimes, you need to do something nice for someone and really take it to the moon. Everything was a surprise, and we started at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for a concert.
I now present Ten Reasons To Visit The Chicago Symphony Orchestra for a concert the next time you’re in town. If you already live within a 25 mile radius of the CSO and have never been or haven’t been in a long time, for heaven’s sake, what is wrong with you?? Pardon me, but down that sandwich, finish reading this, and then click over. You will thank me — not that that’s why I’m doing this.
Let’s do this!
1. Tuxedos. Not on you, necessarily. But on the dudes. Hot.
2. Concessions for sale before the show and during intermission include sparkling wine, good chocolate, and cheese doodles.
3. There’s a big floating thing above the symphony stage that looks like a UFO made of lace, light, air, and wire. It’s my favorite thing in the whole theater. Research reveals that it’s referred to as “the artwork” and its job is to bounce and distribute sound from the stage out to the audience. Fact: the crispy white wires and pale green glass “artwork” weight seven tons. Seven tons!
4. My friend Charlie plays the trombone! Hi, Charlie! You killed it the other night! Way to go, buddy! I waved to you and got in trouble!
5. Hey, man. Take a nap.
6. It’s freaking hilarious to listen to all the coughing in between the movements. People wait…wait…wait to hack up a lung until the sonata is done or whatever and then its just “COUGH! COUGH! HACK! HACK! BRAAHHH! HORK! HORKHORKHORK!” and then the music starts again and everyone falls silent. Very entertaining.
7. There’s always someone who is clearly either a musician or wannabe musician who wants everyone to know they know the music backward and forward, so they make these funny faces and roll their eyes back in their head and wiggle their finger in time and shake their head like they’re in exquisite pain at moments in the score. You can make them feel good by giving them a nod and a smile when they catch your eye. They will try because they want to feel like an expert. It’s okay, we all do that kind of thing in some way.
9. You can go to a crappy bar afterward and balance out. It’s a big world. You can do the symphony and a crappy bar in one night. That’s not just something people do only in the movies.
10. Your symphony is the same symphony everyone else gets, if you want it. Cheap balcony seats? Same symphony as the season ticket holders. Half those people are asleep anyway or thinking about their condo in Sarasota. You go get your experience and you put it in your heart and keep it, you hear me?
You hear that?