audience control

August 1, 2019

One of the things I love about concerts, theatre, lectures, any large spectacle, really, is taking in the audience. I love to watch people’s expressions as their favourite ballad comes up, or as the speaker shares a personal anecdote. The range of responses –– how people react to joy, sadness, shock ––  within a communal experience intrigues me. I’ve talked here before about John Mayer, and what his music means to me. It’s hard to go to a concert of his without feeling a spectrum of emotions. But you wouldn’t have known that last night, watching me watching John. I wasn’t on my feet dancing, or reveling. Instead I stood quite still, and listened. A young couple to my left didn’t stop smiling from start to end. A woman to my right cried big tears during Gravity. Another woman, well into her 70s, wearing a crown of flowers and fairy lights, danced to every single song like she was at Woodstock. We all respond to emotion, especially in a public forum, in different ways. And I find that as compelling as the act on stage.


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