Make us your home page

Sarasota Orchestra surprises air travelers with flash mob

The dulcet tones of a harpist probably weren't enough to get travelers' attentions. But then along came a pilot and two flight attendants, riding up the escalator at Sarasota Bradenton International Airport.

As the attendants in their eye-catching retro uniforms looked on, the pilot whipped out a baton, took a step back -- and an orchestra flash mob was born.

The delightful result was all caught on a video that the orchestra released on YouTube on Tuesday morning.

Thirty-two musicians, pops conductor Andrew Lane (the pilot) and several staff members worked with airport personnel for the impromptu performance on Jan. 21, according to a news release. As violinists, cello players and other musicians appeared spontaneously from all directions, the orchestra performed Bizet's Danse Boheme, from Carmen Suite No. 2.

And those flight attendants in the Pan Am uniforms? Isabelle Besançon, cello, and Jennifer Best Takeda, assistant concertmaster.

The idea of music in the main terminal of airports isn't new. In the past few months, Tampa International Airport has been hosting Friday Night Flights. They feature live music and drink specials. The next one on March 8 features the Irish Buskers with special Irish dancers from 5-7 p.m.

The idea for the orchestra flash mob was cellist Cheeko Matsusaka's. He coordinated musician participation and led the overall effort to make the flash mob a reality, said the release.

"On the surface, a flash mob is pure entertainment. What we tried to accomplish was to also demonstrate the limitless power of music to delight and illustrate the Sarasota Orchestra's energy and unique personality," said Matsusaka.

Gordon Greenfield, vice president of marketing for the Sarasota Orchestra, praised the airport for making the video possible. "We're hopeful the video goes viral," he said. "We know we did something special for the community, the airport and fans of the orchestra."

Sarasota Orchestra surprises air travelers with flash mob 02/19/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 2:57pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. On the Camino de Santiago, Day 17: Think 11 miles of nothing but straight trail and open, flat fields sounds easy? Think again.


    Day 17: Villarmentero de Campos to Lédigos: 33.5 km, 10.25 hours. Total for Days 1-17 = 394 km (245 miles)

  2. Tom Sawyer with a revolver? Twain house has live 'Clue' game


    HARTFORD, Conn. — Was it Tom Sawyer in Samuel Clemens' billiard room with a revolver?

    In this July 14 photo, actor Dan Russell, left, portraying the character Arkansas from Mark Twain's book Roughing it, responds to a question from 10-year-old Emma Connell, center, of Arizona during a "Clue" tour at the Mark Twain House in Hartford, Conn. The tour allows visitors to interact with Twain characters while playing a live-action version of the board game. [AP Photo/Pat Eaton-Robb]
  3. Until this song, Alan Parsons Project stood on much higher ground


    Listening to yesterday's Keats song made me pine for more Alan Parsons Project music and today we dig deeper into their catalogue with Standing On Higher Ground.

  4. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for July 23


    Marie Antoinette: Freefall 411: A contemporary look at the historic pariah looks at Marie Antoinette through the lens of society's obsession with celebrity. Through August 13. A brief talk prior to the performance provides insight to the production. 1 p.m., show starts at 2 p.m., Freefall Theatre, 6099 Central …

    Lucas Wells as King Louis XVI, left, and Megan Rippey as Marie Antoinette in Freefall Theatre's "Marie Antoinette."
  5. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for July 22


    Snooty the Manatee's 69th Birthday Bash: Snooty, documented by Guinness World Records as the oldest known manatee in captivity, turns 69 and celebrates with children's games, art activities, cookies, drinks , interaction with Snooty the mascot and reduced price museum admission. 10 a.m., South Florida Museum, 201 …

    Snooty the manatee poses for a photo Thursday morning while three young manatees are unloaded from Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa Thursday morning at the South Florida Museum in Bradenton.
PAUL VIDELA/ 12/20/07