A lot of people have seen this by now. It makes me cry. It makes me, honestly, lose ALL hope for humanity.
Cliff Notes: World-class violinist Joshua Bell goes into a Washington, D.C. Metro station and plays Bach on a Stradivarius for 45 minutes. No crowd gathers. Hardly anyone even stops. No applause is given.
Read the entire account here.
I know one thing: If my wife had been commuting to work on that day, she would have willingly skipped work to hear him, and tears would have been streaming down her cheeks for the entire 45 minutes.
It reminds me of the story line of this Joni Mitchell song, in which another street performer, a clarinetist, performs great music for free, and is ignored. In the end, nearly all people are Phillistines, with no sense of aesthetics. If they do not have a ticket stub to check, they cannot tell the value of what they are seeing or hearing. So sad.