List of classical music concerts with an unruly audience response

There have been many notable instances of unruly behaviour at classical music concerts, often at the premiere of a new work or production.

19th centuryEdit

20th centuryEdit

21st centuryEdit

  • 2006 (December 10, Milan): Giuseppe Verdi, Aida: When tenor Roberto Alagna's opening aria "Celeste Aida" was booed by the loggionisti in the opera house's less expensive seats, he walked off stage while the music was still playing. Understudy Antonello Palombi, in a black dress shirt and slacks, came on a few seconds later to replace him. Alagna did not return to the production.[29]
  • 2016 (February 29, Cologne): Steve Reich, Piano Phase. During a performance of the piece by Iranian harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani in the Kölner Philharmonie, Germany, parts of the crowd started booing, clapping and whistling a few minutes after the concert began. In response to the pandemonium when different factions in the audience yelled each other down, Esfahani stopped his performance and started playing with the ensemble Concerto Köln a concerto by C. P. E. Bach instead. Several members of the remaining audience apologised for the incident after the concert.[30]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Chancellor, Valerie E. (2002). "Anti-Racialism or Censorship? The 1802 Jewish Riots at Covent Garden Opera". The Opera Quarterly 18 (1): 18–25.
  2. ^ Slatin, Sonia. "Opera and Revolution: La Muette de Portici and the Belgian Revolution of 1830 Revisited", Journal of Musicological Research 3 (1979), 53–54
  3. ^ Wasselin, Christian, "Benvenuto Cellini" on the Hector Berlioz website for a more detailed inside story of the opera
  4. ^ Halperson, Maurice. "The Romance of Music, 56", Musical America, September 8, 1917.
  5. ^ Nicolaisen, Jay. "The First 'Mefistofele'." 19th-Century Music, Vol. 1, No. 3 (March 1978), pp. 221–222.
  6. ^ Kennedy, Michael; Kennedy, Joyce; Rutherford-Johnson, Tim, eds. (2013). "Boito, Arrigo". The Oxford Dictionary of Music. Oxford University Press. p. 99. ISBN 978-0-19-957854-2.
  7. ^ Payton, Rodney J. "The Music of Futurism: Concerts and Polemics", The Musical Quarterly, (1976) LXII (1): 33.
  8. ^ Music of the Twentieth-century Avant-garde: A Biocritical Sourcebook. Greenwood Publishing Group. 2002.
  9. ^ Barker, Andrew (1997). "Battles of the Mind: Berg and the Cultural Politics of 'Vienna 1900'", The Cambridge Companion to Berg, p. 24. Pople, Anthony, ed. ISBN 0-521-56489-1.
  10. ^ Bullard, Truman (1971). The first performance of Igor Stravinsky's Sacre du printemps. Ann Arbor, Michigan: Ann Arbor University (microfilm copy). OCLC 937514.
  11. ^ Pieter C. van den Toorn, Stravinsky and The Rite of Spring, Chapter 1: Point of Order
  12. ^ 100 Years After The Riot, The 'Rite' Remains : Deceptive Cadence : NPR
  13. ^ Steinberg, Michael. "Program notes Archived 2016-06-05 at the Wayback Machine", San Francisco Symphony.
  14. ^ Nice, James. "Music Futurista: The Art of Noises". Retrieved 3 September 2016.
  15. ^ Thorn, Benjamin (2002). "Luigi Russolo (1885-1947)". In Larry Sitsky (ed.). Music of the Twentieth-century Avant-garde: A Biocritical Sourcebook. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 415. ISBN 978-0-313-29689-5.
  16. ^ Peterkin, Norman. "Erik Satie's 'Parade'", The Musical Times, Vol. 60, No. 918 (Aug. 1, 1919), 426.
  17. ^ "Springtime in Paris: Erik Satie". 2000-03-01. Retrieved 2014-01-14.
  18. ^ "Taxi Toots Sound Sweet After Music By Composers Guild: Many Hisses Greet Conclusion of 'Hyperprism'; Dissenters Told to Leave and Piece Is Played Over Again", New-York Tribune, March 5, 1923.
  19. ^ Orledge, Robert. "Erik Satie's Ballet Mercure" (1924) JSTOR 766416
  20. ^ Key, Susan, Larry Rothe, and Thomas M. Tilson. American Mavericks. San Francisco, California: San Francisco Symphony, 2001.
  21. ^ Vinton, John (January 1964). "The Case of the Miraculous Mandarin". The Musical Quarterly. L (1): 13. doi:10.1093/mq/L.1.1. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  22. ^ Sprout, Leslie A. (Winter 2009). "The 1945 Stravinsky Debates: Nigg, Messiaen, and the Early Cold War in France". The Journal of Musicology. University of California Press. 26 (1): 86. doi:10.1525/jm.2009.26.1.85.
  23. ^ Mattis, Olivia. "Varèse's Multimedia Conception of Déserts", The Musical Quarterly, Vol. 76, No. 4 (Winter 1992), p. 557.
  24. ^ Boyden, Matthew, and Nick Kimberly. The Rough Guide to Opera, Rough Guides, 2002, p. 550.
  25. ^ "Luigi Nono". Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
  26. ^ Ernst Schnabel, "Zum Untergang einer Uraufführung" and "Postscriptum nach dreiunddreissig Tagen", in Hans Werner Henze and Ernst Schnabel, Das Floss der Medusa: Text zum Oratorium, 47–61 & 65–79 (Munich: Piper-Verlag, 1969);
    Andrew Porter, "Henze: The Raft of the Frigate 'Medusa' – Oratorio" [record review of DGG 139428-9], Gramophone 47, no. 563 (April 1970): 1625;
    Anon. "Affären/Henze: Sie bleibt", Der Spiegel 22, no. 51 (16 December 1968): 152. (in German)
  27. ^ Schonberg, Harold. "Music: A Concert Fuss: Piece by Reich Draws a Vocal Reaction," The New York Times, January 20, 1973.
  28. ^ January 1, Frank J. Oterion; 2001 (2001-01-01). "John Adams: In The Center Of American Music". NewMusicBox. Retrieved 2020-01-26.
  29. ^ Wakin, Daniel J. (December 13, 2006). "After La Scala Boos, a Tenor Boos Back". The New York Times. Retrieved January 31, 2018.
  30. ^ Lizzie Dearden (2016-03-03). "Iranian musician forced to stop Cologne concert after audience members jeer and shout 'speak German'". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-10-28.