Perfect for Halloween: New York’s Metropolitan Opera Interrupted by a Dead Person

Things were progressing as usual this past Saturday at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. A full house was enjoying a performance of Guillaume Tell, the Rossini opera based on the story of William Tell. If you’re unfamiliar with this work, it goes like this.

Then, during the second intermission, something weird happened. A man walked out of the audience and sprinkled some powder from a bag into the orchestra pit. What this a terrorist attack? Some kind of biological assault involving anthrax? A sprinkling of radioactive material?

Not taking any chances, the rest of the performance was canceled, the opera house evacuated and all manner of counterterrorism, NYPD and hazmat people were called in. Fortunately, no. The man–late identified as Roger Kaiser of Texas–was just scattering ashes of a departed friend. In the end, he was charged with a health code violation. Meanwhile, a lot of the musicians in the orchestra were really, really angry that their instruments were declared untouchable because they were part of a crime scene–not to mention rather dusty.

(Via the New York Times)


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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