The woman who screamed in a concert now says why

The woman who screamed in a concert now says why


norman lebrecht

November 30, 2017

Last week, a video of a woman who got a shock in mid-Stravinsky went viral on this site. Now, the person who was disturbed by the music has come forward to explain.

Stephanie Evans says she was not sleeping in the concert, just closing her eyes to concentrate.

‘In this instance I was sitting there very meditatively feeling the peace and bliss of that peaceful blissful place and then I was startled,’ she said.

The conductor, Scott Seaton, said: ‘I think it’s great that someone can have such a physical reaction to sound. And for something like this to happen very randomly here I think is great.’

More here.



  • RW2013 says:

    At one point in the musical number the volume is really low and then suddenly picks up in a crescendo, that’s when Stephanie Evans screamed.

    No crescendo between the Ronde and the Danse in my score.
    Puerile story.

    • David R Osborne says:

      RW, putting our pedantry to one side for just a moment, this is a great story. If it just happens to be the way large numbers of people first encounter this wonderful music, then there is no downside.

      • Frankster says:

        Stravinsky would have been delighted…

      • Rosalie Birney says:

        It has about 460 of my student students very interested in hearing more of this music. They were fascinated by Rite of Spring earlier in their year after hearing about its first performance…..audiences of tomorrow…..they are out there…we just need a little hook to get their attention..early on, if possible.

    • Bruce says:

      Watch the video with the sound turned on. She doesn’t scream after a crescendo — it’s after that sudden fortissimo you mention (end of Ronde/beginning of Danse).

      Peurile comment.

      • Bruce says:

        *[puerile, sorry]

        • RW2013 says:

          Mein Gott!
          keep up Schmuckayne.
          “”””””At one point in the musical number the volume is really low and then suddenly picks up in a crescendo, that’s when Stephanie Evans screamed.””””
          is a quote from your local rag.

          • Bruce says:

            Oh. Thanks for not making it clear that you were quoting from something. The lack of quotation marks makes it look like you were the one saying it. My apologies for reading your comment in the way you wrote it.

            (P.S. it’s not my local rag — I don’t live there)

          • Adam Stern says:

            Fake news strikes again.

    • bratschegirl says:

      The worst offense in that sentence is the comma splice. Poor, neglected semicolons, hoping against hope that someone who writes words for a living might occasionally wish to deploy one.

  • Elizabeth Owen says:

    In the early 90’s Welsh National Opera had a very small touring community group, a few singers and a pianist.

    As BP had sponsored the tour all over Wales they were invited to the BP theatre in the basement of the BP tower in Moorgate, City of London.
    WNO performed a stripped down “Rigoletto” for BP staff and as Gilda met her end a lady said loudly “Oh no! which sadly caused some giggling. But it demonstrated the power of a story well told.

  • Ceasar says:

    Ah so she didn’t fake it.

  • Sue says:

    I’ve actually jumped in my seat and been shocked during a concert of works I don’t know. It’s usually a loud bang/chord after a quiet section. Very embarrassing.

  • Larry says:

    I was at a Pittsburgh Symphony concert a number of years ago. They did the Rosenkavalier Suite. Just before the very end, there is kind of a “false” ending. During that second or two of silence, a young woman sitting a few rows behind me in the upper balcony, shouted out loud: “WOW!” She was mortified but I went over to her and said: “You have nothing to be embarrassed about. You were reacting to what you heard and that was great.”

  • Andrew Condon says:

    The end of Mahler 6 can still be quite a shock – even when you know what’s going to happen

  • Cubs Fan says:

    And to think that over 200 years ago a “shock” in a relatively tame Haydn symphony was supposed to elicit such a response. What would that audience have made of Stravinsky?

  • Stradivarius says:

    Is this site run by a clique? Always same old faces on here ad nauseum. Who really cares if someone screams in Stravinsky – hardly music to unwind to.

  • moonpavilion says:

    I think it’s marvellous that music can provoke that kind of reaction. I’d MUCH rather hear that from an audience than all the coughing I heard at a recent London piano recital. Why do some people go to concerts? Do they actually realise how much their coughing obliterates a solo piano in the Royal Festival Hall, especially in a hushed, rapt slow movement?

    I remember as a schoolboy hearing the Kilmarnock choral union do Verdi’s Requiem which I did not know and at the start of the Dies Irae I couldn’t stop laughing because of the shock I had received – hardly an appropriate reaction for the subject matter. Alfred Brendel – supreme in Beethoven and Schubert – did say laughter is allowed, but he was talking about a musical joke in LvB or Haydn.