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Thread: Cheering during live performance

  1. #26
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    This is purely a cultural phenomenon. There are many ways of expressing audience pleasure (or displeasure!) during a public performance. The OP might be interested to know that it was not always the case that audiences to classical music remained quiet until the last note. On the contrary! Historically speaking, that is a relatively new phenomenon. It is also true that different cultures react differently. Others have already noted differences between U.S. and British audiences. In many Russian performances, the audience tends to synchronize their clapping at the end, so that they all clap in rhythm at the very same time. Many of us in the West find that pretty weird. In the Beatnik era, jazz audiences used to snap their fingers and nod their heads. In rock concerts, folks used to light matches or cigarette lighters. Today, they light up cell phones!

    In the 18th and 19th centuries, audiences used to throw rotten vegetables when they were displeased. You don't tend to see that much anymore. Maybe it's because modern audiences have to pass through security to get in?

    In my opinion, the OP should just get over it, and learn to assimilate a little better with the local culture, wherever he may be listening. A public performance benefits from being a public, shared experience -- it's not a private one! The audience often feeds on its own pleasure and expresses it with exuberance. This is a good thing. Their spontaneous, public expression can further energize the performers, and bring about improved performances, and better experiences for everyone! If he wants to hear every note played in comparative silence, he would be well advised to just buy a recording and listen to that in private, in a quiet room somewhere. That is not what a public performance is about.

    Finally, he should also consider this matter from the perspective of the performer! Does the performer appear to be bothered by all the audience ruckus (sometimes, this is the case)? If the performer seems pleased by the audience's expression of exuberance, then he should not be one to complain about it. On the other hand, if the performer is being put off by all the disturbance, then he might be right to complain.

    Methinks he doth protest too much.

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  3. #27
    Registered User Al Trujillo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by peterleyenaar View Post
    During a classical music performance, one gets some looks if they start clapping at the wrong time.
    During a classical performences people clap when the mucisians come on stage,
    then silent untill after the performance , then clap for an extended period time and call
    bravo , depending on the quality of the performance, this I think is all together more respectfull.
    Respectfull, yes...but geez...how boring.

    And forgive my old-man symptoms but I'd hate to go to one and have to pee.

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Monkey View Post
    when classical was all the rage they did... Even in the middle of a piece. It wasn't until the late 19th/ early 20th centuries that audiences started to be "hushed" and it really wasn't until after WW1 that it was nearly universal.
    The exception, of course, is opera. If there isn't hearty applause (and even cheering) after the major arias, especially those at dramatic points in the action, then you know the performer has just produced a fizzling dud. It's not entirely uncommon after a really fine rendition for the applause to go on until the aria gets repeated a second time, as an on-the-spot encore.

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    I would love to see a live performance without any audience. As far as I am concerned audiences add nothing top the concert experience. They cheer, cough and burp their babies and bring their farm animals. The absolute best concerts I have attended didn't have any audiences. The only concerts better than that would be live concerts without both audiences and musicians.
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  9. #30
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Interestingly, I was listening today to a a local university radio station playing an old vinyl recording of a live bluegrass show from the US (probably from the 60's or 70's), featuring a number of bands and performers. No one applauded till the end of a piece.

    The first place I became aware of applause for individual solos during a tune was at jazz performances, a genre in which improvisation is encouraged and appreciated. Perhaps audiences applauded during blues tunes as well -- it's not always clear where the border lies. Other than in cases of spontaneity, I suspect this practice spread from jazz to rock and other styles of music. Before the end of the 60's, I recall students in my high school, who were mainly pop/rock fans, clapping for solos during classical pieces done by the school orchestra, to the puzzlement of teachers and performers. The custom was clearly established by then in the world of popular music. In Canada, applause for every instrumental break, which can be tiring, has become a custom in most live rock/folk/jazz/blues/trad settings (those in which the audience is actually listening anyway), just as being silent is a custom at the symphony. Trying to stop applause, in North America at least, would be like holding back a river. I've even heard choirs applauded in church services -- in my day we'd have burned in Hell for that. (Personally, I don't have the problems of professional musicians, so anyone who wants to clap or hoot and holler for me is welcome to, no matter what the hour.)

  10. #31
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    I have no issue with people shouting appreciation at an awesome solo, or a cool groove, especially in a rowdy genre like Rock, Blue, or Bluegrass.
    The thing I absolutely hate, and feel like starting a national awareness movement about, is when the crowd decides to clap along with the performer. Note to public: please do not do this unless the performer requests it.
    It is invariably out of tempo with the song, always sluggish and not coordinated between the front and back of the room, a bit like recording with bad latency, and usually ends up dragging the tempo way down as the performer tries to adjust to make the effect less painful. It really sucks for the guy on stage. We don’t need audience percussion.
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by T.D.Nydn View Post
    Cheering and clapping after someone finishing their break bothers me,you can't hear the next guy starting their solo..
    Exactly! Especially when a solo (break) at breakneck speed lasts only a few seconds anyway, half of that gets drowned out. Don't know if the artist really likes that.
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by T.D.Nydn View Post
    Cheering and clapping after someone finishing their break bothers me,you can't hear the next guy starting their solo..
    +1

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    My answer to do I like the whooping and cheering in the middle of a song depends on which side of the mic I'm on. We once taped a " live" program to be shown on a local TV station. No one in a good sized hall but 2 men behind cameras. Hardest program vie ever played. On the other hand if I'm listening to music I'm listening to music. I don't play it for background noise while I'm working reading eating etc. My attention is on the music, so my preference on the audience side of the mic is for everyone to shut up and let me hear. Can I reconcile to two positions? No, so if I'm playing let me know you are out there and if I'm listening hold cheering to a minimum. Best compromise I can come up with.

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    //
    Last edited by peterleyenaar; Mar-03-2018 at 6:09pm.

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    One lady liked our music so well that she brought her chair up close to the stage and started playing the spoons, her timing was so bad that I had to ask her not to do it...Normally I like crowd participation but in her case, NO THANKS...

    Willie

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by sblock View Post
    This is purely a cultural phenomenon. There are many ways of expressing audience pleasure (or displeasure!) during a public performance. The OP might be interested to know that it was not always the case that audiences to classical music remained quiet until the last note. On the contrary! Historically speaking, that is a relatively new phenomenon. It is also true that different cultures react differently. Others have already noted differences between U.S. and British audiences. In many Russian performances, the audience tends to synchronize their clapping at the end, so that they all clap in rhythm at the very same time. Many of us in the West find that pretty weird. In the Beatnik era, jazz audiences used to snap their fingers and nod their heads. In rock concerts, folks used to light matches or cigarette lighters. Today, they light up cell phones!

    In the 18th and 19th centuries, audiences used to throw rotten vegetables when they were displeased. You don't tend to see that much anymore. Maybe it's because modern audiences have to pass through security to get in?

    In my opinion, the OP should just get over it, and learn to assimilate a little better with the local culture, wherever he may be listening. A public performance benefits from being a public, shared experience -- it's not a private one! The audience often feeds on its own pleasure and expresses it with exuberance. This is a good thing. Their spontaneous, public expression can further energize the performers, and bring about improved performances, and better experiences for everyone! If he wants to hear every note played in comparative silence, he would be well advised to just buy a recording and listen to that in private, in a quiet room somewhere. That is not what a public performance is about.

    Finally, he should also consider this matter from the perspective of the performer! Does the performer appear to be bothered by all the audience ruckus (sometimes, this is the case)? If the performer seems pleased by the audience's expression of exuberance, then he should not be one to complain about it. On the other hand, if the performer is being put off by all the disturbance, then he might be right to complain.

    Methinks he doth protest too much.
    Thank you for telling me what to do and what not to do, btw, bold print is the equivalent of shouting

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb View Post
    Since we are talking about live performance pet peeves, how about when the performer stops singing so the audience can sing the song? I never like that. I came to hear the artist sing, not the audience.
    Plus, I'm paying them to sing! Why should I sing if they're not paying me?

  21. #39
    Notary Sojac Paul Kotapish's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    It all depends on the artist and the venue.

    For most shows, I do prefer an audience that sits on its hands and keeps its mouth shut until the music's over. I've been to too many concerts where some idiot nearby whooped nonstop through a performance--even during quiet moments--just to hear the sound of his own voice.

    I don't mind a spontaneous response to an outstanding solo, but give those knee-jerk whoops a rest, for Pete's (and Paul's) sake.

    In the classical-music world, the reverence is sometimes over-the-top, though, and a lot of younger ensembles are taking their music to venues where a much more casual approach is welcome.

    And there are a few shows where the singing along can be awesome. I saw one of Tom Petty's very last shows, and his audience sang along on almost everything, especially when he brought the band down low and encouraged the crowd to belt it out. It was fun and cathartic and I'm glad I had a change to sing along with Tom and Heartbreakers that night. It was like being in church for me.

    Again, it all depends on the act and the venue.
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  23. #40
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by peterleyenaar View Post
    Thank you for telling me what to do and what not to do, btw, bold print is the equivalent of shouting
    Actually, ALL CAPS IS THE EQUIVALENT OF SHOUTING. Boldface is the equivalent of audience applause after a solo.

    Seriously, aren't you the one telling audiences what they ought to do, or not to do? I was suggesting that you adjust a little better to the cultural norms. These differ with regions, venues, audience demography, musical genres ... and with the times. Adapt, tolerate, and thrive, I say!
    Last edited by sblock; Mar-03-2018 at 8:07pm.

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  25. #41
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    I would love to see a live performance without any audience.
    Obviously, you have never been to one of my solo shows.

    Over the course of about 8 or 9 years I played many shows where I was one of several acts on the bill, but every so often I did solo shows where I was the only performer. On those shows 'only me' shows, I never had more than 2 or 3 transient people watching - and on MANY of those shows there was NOBODY in attendance. The situation became so common place that I actually once did an album called 'Empty White Chairs', as a not-too-veiled reference to those days when I looked over a sea of butt-less white chairs as my audience. In short, (for me) a public performance was simply a paid rehearsal . . . I did pretty much everything that I would do in a normal live show, only there was nobody there to hear or see it.

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by T.D.Nydn View Post
    Cheering and clapping after someone finishing their break bothers me,you can't hear the next guy starting their solo..
    While it happens occasionally, and it may drown out the first notes of the next thing happening, it sure feels good when they are clapping for a great break the you may have played. It doesn't happen to me much, but it has happened a few times and it sure feels good. The audience is letting you know they liked what you did, or that is was indeed a special moment for them. If they wait until the song is finished the moment is lost.
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Manfred Hacker View Post
    Exactly! Especially when a solo (break) at breakneck speed lasts only a few seconds anyway, half of that gets drowned out. Don't know if the artist really likes that.
    that's not a solo, that's a fill. A solo (hah! I typed silo) is pretty much at last a chorus in length more or less. A few seconds ain't worth getting worked up over. Let the drummer or dobro player have the fills, it's not like they're going to get to the front of the stage anyways.

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by peterleyenaar View Post
    Thank you for telling me what to do and what not to do, btw, bold print is the equivalent of shouting
    you forgot the "harumph" at the end.

  29. #45
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by pops1 View Post
    While it happens occasionally, and it may drown out the first notes of the next thing happening, it sure feels good when they are clapping for a great break the you may have played. It doesn't happen to me much, but it has happened a few times and it sure feels good. The audience is letting you know they liked what you did, or that is was indeed a special moment for them. If they wait until the song is finished the moment is lost.
    It's those first few opening notes though that are the most important in a solo,usually attention getters that are lost in a cacaphony of applause,,,that's bluegrass speaking,jazz is different that the solos are long and extended...

  30. #46
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    This is so situational, and so related to genre of music, that we're all just talking past each other.

    I was at an Altan concert earlier this week, in Seattle. People clapped at the end of the sets. People "Whooped!" when the tune in a set jumped up in tempo and lift, which is what you do in an Irish session! The lead performer, Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh, and the accordion player Martin Tourish whooped a few times too. How are you not going to whoop along in the audience? People clapped and stomped, amazingly in time... maybe because at gigs like this, there is a higher than usual number of musicians in the audience.

    Completely different from a performance of the Seattle Symphony right across the street at Benaroya Hall. Different strokes...

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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by T.D.Nydn View Post
    Cheering and clapping after someone finishing their break bothers me,you can't hear the next guy starting their solo..
    + 1 to that, especially when I feel they're applauding a certain musician or even instrument out of habit only. Say, Brian Sutton is playing with Andy Statman and a couple other great musicians, and the some members of the audience inexplicably applaud Brian's break - which is great as usual, but no more than what Andy or the others have done. Seems just a current day culture of expecting the guitarist to be the main draw or something. Don't know. But I've witnessed it a few times with different artists.
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  34. #48
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by sblock View Post

    In my opinion, the OP should just get over it, and learn to assimilate a little better with the local culture, wherever he may be listening.

    Methinks he doth protest too much.
    Well forgive the OP for having an opinion different than yours! Maybe he'll "get over it" soon..

    Like many others here, I think it depends on the music and venue. What bothers me is when people shout or yell in the middle of a relatively quiet song. You get the feeling that they do it to make themselves heard or draw attention to themselves, since it usually has nothing to do with the song or the moment itself. And it almost exclusively happens when and where people are drinking. That's why I dislike going to a show where people have been or are drinking.

    Depending on the music and the venue, shouting or yelling during a song can either be an irritant, or add greatly to the atmosphere and excitement.
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    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by jim simpson View Post
    I just wish they'd stop throwing articles of clothing at me while I play. It's distracting plus I'm happy with my wardrobe as it is, lol!
    I don't mind the panty throwing, but the Depends are a little bit depressing.

  36. #50

    Default Re: Cheering during live performance

    Quote Originally Posted by lowtone2 View Post
    I don't mind the panty throwing, but the Depends are a little bit depressing.
    Lol! As a person in that age range, although not a user of said product, let it be known that I am in no way offended by such humor - it's all good fun. The older we get, the more we have to laugh at life in general, finding humor in everyday stuff is a good emotional-survival technique.

    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb View Post
    Since we are talking about live performance pet peeves, how about when the performer stops singing so the audience can sing the song? ...
    Or when the performers slow down and play quieter, and you *think* they're at the end of that song so you start applauding, but it turns out the performers have tricked you and they haven't actually finished the song after all, no, they drag it on out for another full minute with the slowdown stuff. Or worse, they start up again and dive right back into the song (or an entirely new song) without even giving the audience a chance to applaud. Bah!

    By the time the performers finally *do* finish their little mindgame song, the audience is so unsure as to whether or not it's time to applaud, that the audience might just sit on their hands out of either uncertainty or outright irritation. It feels like the performers are telling the audience, "We don't need your applause, we don't need you, we don't care if you like us or not, so we're not even going to give you a chance to applaud." Boo.

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