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The Weekend Vote weekend vote: Has your cell phone ever gone off during a rehearsal? A performance?

July 19, 2008 at 1:15 AM




Wow, which idiot left their cell phone on? During a rehearsal, sheesh!



Oh I recognize that ring tone....


Actually it sounds a lot like my ring tone...


@$%@#$!#!!!! It's MY phone!


OFF! My purse..which pocket?


How do I turn it OFF...geez...


How does this blasted thing work? Where's the @$ off button?


Okay I'll just ANSWER, turn off...




From Christopher Ciampoli
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 1:40 AM
It was in a regional orchestra rehearsal during high school. I think we were rehearsing Mussorgsky's A Night on Bald Mountain. Of course at this one part it was sooo loud. But I faintly heard something out of place in the distance. I ignored it at first. Honestly it sounded like it was coming from a mile away somewhere in the viola section -- until I recognized it was MY ringtone! I took my phone out and turned it off. The conductor was looking at the brass section the entire time, and only the people immediately around me knew. The sheer volume of the passage saved me from a fate far worse.
From Ray Randall
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 3:46 AM
I aleways turn it to vibrate or no ring when putting in the violin case.
From Bethany Morris
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 5:18 AM
I've lucked out in rehearsals and performances; not so much in classes.
From David Allen
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 6:09 AM
I've never had an incident with a cell phone but we did have a wrist watch alarm go off during a recording session.
From Tobias Seyb
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 6:48 AM
I have no cell phone :-)

Another underrated acoustic danger: Didicams. Last week I experienced someone taking photos during a piano trio performance with system beep tones in his camera on. He didn't even recognize he was making a noise.

From Pauline Lerner
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 9:48 AM
I left my cell phone in my purse, so it was not near me as I played during the rehearsal. I heard it go off and decided that it would stop more quickly by itself than it would if I ran to get it and shut it off. Also, I wanted anonymity. What was particularly embarrassing was that my ringtone was the theme of one of the movements of a Mozart symphony which we had previously played in concert. The conductor and the whole orchestra paused, silent, and listened to it.
From Anne Horvath
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 1:02 PM
I don't own a cell phone (insert smiley face here).
From E. Smith
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 1:10 PM
I turned my cell phone to "silent" as usual, smug because I had never had a cellphone go off during a concert or lecture.

But what I didn't realize was that the new bluetooth ear device connected to the phone had its own little noisemaker, about as loud as a mosquito's whine to a bystander- except during the concert, where it sounded to me like a trumpeting elephant.

I was mortified and grabbed for the thing inside my coat pocket. The woman next to me whispered, "That's you." I don't know if anyone else around me heard it, but I'm sure they were distracted by my squeezing and palpating the spider-sized object, which eventually stopped on its own.

Now I leave it in the car.

From Steven Rochen
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 1:23 PM
When a concert has an opening greeting I have had a person call me during the greeting, when the cell phone in my pocket rings I pretend to be embarassed and answer the phone. I then tell the audience that the caller was reminding me to turn off my cell phone!
From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 1:50 PM
I use my cell phone almost exclusively for outgoing calls, unless I've arranged specifically that someone is going to call me on it at a particular time and place. Otherwise it's off.
From Alayna Faulkenberg
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 2:03 PM
Silent and vibrate are my friends. They have saved me countless times, but failed me once in rehearsal this spring during the gunfight of Billy the Kid. Suddenly Eleanor Rigby was coming from my pocket, I was really horrified. I'm just glad that my violin prof is good natured because my phone buzzes at least once every lesson, but hers rings even louder, and she usually answers it :)
From Jason Bell
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 2:58 PM
I'm usually a Nazi about that sort of thing for myself but I did forget to turn it off one time and I got a call during a slow, soft, rather important section in a pops concert. Everyone on stage heard it. When the concert was over I discovered that my case had been moved from the backstage area to near the dressing rooms! Way to go, stagehands. Heh.

I'm a bit of a txting fiend, though. I txt constantly in rehearsals, but only when other sections are being rehearsed and the violins are just sitting there.

From Mara Gerety
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 3:42 PM
Mine went off in a chamber music coaching at school last semester. I had to answer it, because it was a friend of mine whom I'd been helping out on some research for a big project, so I whipped it open, nervously barked "Can't talk! In rehearsal!" in reply to which I heard a horrified "OH, SH*T!!!" and the line went dead. :)
From Kelsey Z.
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 9:11 PM
Haha, this reminds me of a concert i went to once. A Mozart symphony..... the beautiful lush, delicate, sweet slow mvt in pp dynamic, beautiful string playing and suddenly from backstage Ride of the Valkeryies can be heard in traditional ring tone style! A quick glance around and you notice one of the violinists towards the back of the 1st violin section ducking her head and squirming in her seat as it becomes evident that it's her phone and there's nothing she can do!
From Paul Grant
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 10:02 PM
Generally I always leave my phone on vibrate just to be safe! That did happen ONCE during chamber music coaching...that was real embarrassing...the professor was NOT amused!
From Laurie Niles
Posted on July 19, 2008 at 11:04 PM
I have to say that I usually have my phone on "vibrate," but I'd actually turned it off for the first half, then used it at the break, then forgot to either turn it off or to vibrate. Then when it rang, I was so flustered I totally forgot the simplest solution, to just flick the "silent" switch. I was in a complete panic, and nothing too logical came to mind!
From Nicole Stacy
Posted on July 20, 2008 at 1:56 AM
Yes, and ironically, the call was from my violin teacher.
From Emily Grossman
Posted on July 20, 2008 at 10:52 PM
No cell phone, thank you.
From Yixi Zhang
Posted on July 20, 2008 at 11:33 PM
No leash either:)
From Mike Lambert
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 5:58 AM
Thankfully my phone never has gone off during either. But, last summer at Brevard, my tuner accidentally turned itself on in my stand case in the auditorium. After we finished tuning, there was a mysterious "A" still ringing in the hall. One of the TAs scoured the rows trying to find it. Not really embarrassing, but funny nonetheless.
From Beatrice JULIAN
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 8:23 AM
It happened only once during a rehearsal and it was really a shame ^^^^

Since this day I set it on "flight mode" :)

From Laurie Trlak
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 11:06 AM
I voted yes to going off during a rehearsal, but it was my pager, not cell phone.
It was while I was in college, and the symphony was rehearsing. I always kept my pager on vibrate, but my teenaged son decided to borrow it over a weekend (without my knowledge) and had turned the beeper on. So on Tuesday afternoon, in the middle of rehearsal the pager went off. I was so embarrassed! When we took a break I called home to find out what the problem was. It never happened again. But I always make sure to set my cell phone on vibrate now for movies, church, performances, etc.
From Peter Kent
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 12:31 PM
Our deacon was delivering his opening lines when his cell phone rang....he excused himself, and then proclaimed the call had been from our priest reminding everyone to turn off their cell phones during the mass....kind of a neat trick that certainly got the message to the congregation in a unique and inoffensive manner.
From Rachel Fellows
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 6:55 PM
One time at a summer festival I had my metronome go off during a concert. Having just come from a rehearsal myself, I sat down in the auditorium with my instrument along with my backpack filled with all my rehearsal necessities... like my metronome. When I sat down it sounded like the person in front of me was obnoxioulsy tapping their foot- and not in rhythm to the performance I might add. It annoyed me so much I was about to ask the person to stop, but as I leaned forward I realized it was coming from my bag. My friends next to me could barely keep back the laughter as I scrambled to find my metronome to turn it off.
From Debra Wade
Posted on July 21, 2008 at 7:11 PM
I've only had my cell go off once and that was during rehearsal.

Our Symphony had a new conductor starting (that night) and I was sitting as concertmaster. This man was stern,serious and all about business.

He started to give his little introductory speech and just as he got to the part where he did not tolerate cell phones, pagers or other noise-making devices during HIS rehearsals my phone went off loud and clear. In my haste to turn it off I triggered the voice dialing feature which kept repeating "Say a command, say a command, say a command".

Talk about humiliating!

From Don Sullivan
Posted on July 22, 2008 at 1:59 AM
Not a rehearsal story, but related was the first time my wife and I went to see Itzahk Perlman, here in Cleveland, OH. Mr. Perlman was in the second half of his performance where he addressed the audience about the music he and his accompanist were about to play. As Mr. Perlman was discussing the next piece and its composer a cell phone rang about two rows behind my wife and me. Without missing a beat Mr. Perlman exclaimed, "That must be Mr. Liszt now!"
From Rory Williams
Posted on July 22, 2008 at 6:43 PM
Not during a concert, but rather an intense meeting. The phone vibrates and I squeeze my pocket aiming for the ignore button. A moment later I hear my older brother’s goofy voice hollering out my name several times…I had accidentally hit the speaker button.

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