Fly the Friendly Airwaves

Friday, December 17, 2010 - 12:36 PM

How cool is this? Cincinnati is now an airport oasis for music lovers. Instead of being bombarded by Muzak, passengers at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport (CVG) now tote that baggage and lift that laptop (not to mention shed those shoes) to the strains of Beethoven and Tchaikovsky. In mid-December, they started broadcasting Cincinnati Symphony and Pops recordings throughout the terminals. SCORE ONE FOR CLASSICAL MUSIC! 

It may not be enough to make serious music lovers facing long lay-overs route their flights through Cincinnati, but airlines do always make that "thank you" announcement at the end of the flight, saying that you have a choice when it comes to air travel. And how cool would it be to hear the New York (or Brooklyn) Philharmonic at JFK and LGA, and the New Jersey Symphony at EWR?

Is there a place you wish would put classical music on its system, instead of whatever else you’re subjected to? (For me, it’s the dentist's office, where the taste in music always seems to set my teeth on edge.)

Below: The Cincinnati Symphony brass quintet serenades travelers:


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Comments [10]

Frederick Willman from Madison, WI.

Rossini, now.

When you kill us with old chestnuts hour after hour during the day, that is muzak to my ears--and I have to run to 3.

You obviously cater to the water cooler crowd during the day.

Fred Willman
Madison, WI.

Jan. 17 2011 05:10 PM
Bill from NJ

The Port Authority Bus Terminal plays classical music (one afternoon coming home after a long day at work, perked up hearing Yehudi Menuhin's fantastic third movement of the Mendelsohn violin concerto, unlike any other *smile*), though at one point I was ready to sabotage their sound system, since the only thing they seemed to be playing was the Brahm's Piano Trio #1....

There are arguments about classical music being used as background sound not being a great thing, but maybe it will catch someone's ear, maybe some young people the audiences definitely need.

Dec. 23 2010 07:49 PM
jerome rosen from Jersey City

Dear Naomi
Thanks for the Casals. I was a member (as a violinist) of the Festival 8 times between 1959 and 1972, and I played the Carol of the Birds with Don Pablo a few times. His energy and integrity has often been a source on which have drawn during many a dark moment: like playing Jingle Bells as a prisoner of Christmas Pops in Boston. I mean, the tune is harmless, but having to play it 4 times a day all week is a little too much.

How about Bach...Magnificat perhaps, or the 3rd Orchestral Suite, if you happen to have the Casals Marlboro recording handy. Bach trumpets always give high energy.

Well, maybe not always. I played principal 2nd on that recording, and it was during the Gavotte that Don Pablo was unhappy with the trumpets. "Too square, too heavy....too German!" he shouted. Then he muttered to himself (and to the few of us who who close enough to hear him) "The Germans! They don't understand Bach!"

Dec. 21 2010 04:10 PM
Robert Jones

Le Pain Quotidien is a growing restuaurant chain in NY that plays nothing but Classical, at least whenver I make it there, though I'm not thrilled about the sound quality.

Dec. 20 2010 01:30 PM
Devon Estes

I miss the old tradition of Italian classical music in Italian restaurants. It's been too long since I've heard a Caruso while eating Bolognese.

And if you don't want to raptly listen, it's far easier to talk over classical than whatever drum-heavy pop music most restaurants play these days.

Dec. 20 2010 11:33 AM
Kerry J. Dinkin from West Orange, NJ

Working in retail, I'm subjected to a constant barrage of pop Christmas music from a NY radio station. How I wish that they would pipe in classical Christmas music instead! I think that shoppers would be soothed by the sweet strains of some Bach or Britten instead of "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree"!

Dec. 20 2010 11:28 AM
Warner W. Johnston from Rockland County, NY

My dentist does have classical music available and knows I prefer it. Would you like a reference? Midtown area.

I also do a lot of conference calls with one group and their hold music is classical and for a phone not to bad quality.

Dec. 20 2010 10:22 AM
Robert Jones

Although I'm not a regular rider, and haven't used it in several months, the last few times I took NJ Transit out of Penn Station I was pleasantly surprised to hear classical music playing in the waiting area.

Dec. 18 2010 11:49 AM
Michael Meltzer

Several years ago I rode a Greyhound Bus from Boston to Rockland, Maine, in a seat with a TV monitor that wouldn't turn off, and spent the trip with an obligatory run and a re-run of a made-for-TV movie about Andre the seal.
Is your question, "would I have preferred Beethoven?" You tell me!

Dec. 18 2010 05:59 AM
Cindy Legorreta from Union Square

I very much like the idea of any place where we are 'temporary captives' (elevators, airport waiting rooms, phone lines on hold) playing classical music to help pass the time. I distinctly remember calling a mail order company a few months back, to straighten out a snag in my order. The 800 operator graciously apologized, saying I had called during an extremely busy time, and she'd have to put me on hold, briefly and hoped I wouldn't mind too much. Next thing I knew I was listening to Vivaldi! What a delightful surprise. Less than five minutes later she returned, took care of my problem and, I hung up. I'm happy to say this wasn't the first time I encountered "listen to Bach till we come back", or "Haydn on hold". Nobody likes sitting in limbo, whether waiting for a flight, a customer service representative or a Doctor's receptionist - and classical music really goes a long way to defuse the upset (at least it did for ME!)

Dec. 17 2010 05:08 PM

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