Just when you're ready to dump your shopping bags and tell Santa to go f@ck himself and the reindeer he flew in on, finally you get something a little different with this year's holiday shopping experience. Or at least you get the hope of something different.
Random Acts of Culture could be coming to a mall near you if you live in Miami or seven other cities in the country. That means you could be minding your holiday-shopping-list business when who should appear, but a smattering of casually dressed members of the Florida Grand Opera. Then they start performing "Toreador" from Carmen in the middle of Macy's shoe department.
That's what happened November 24, when shoppers taking advantage of a
shoe sale were given the gift of an impromptu
performance of opera, courtesy of the Florida Grand Opera, the Adrienne
Arsht Performing Arts Center, and the Knight Arts Foundation. Actually,
there were six performances that day. And it won't stop there. The
Knight Arts Foundation is sponsoring 1,000 such Random Acts of Culture
over the next three years in Miami, Philadelphia, Charlotte, NC; Detroit, MI;
San Jose, CA; St. Paul, MN; Akron, OH; and Macon, GA.
Besides the Miami performance, there was a gargantuan performance of "Hallelujah" by 650
singers of the Opera Company of Philadelphia at a Macy's in that city (check out the viral YouTube video here) and
others. In addition to spreading some holiday cheer, the Knight Foundation
is behind the Random Acts of Culture movement as a way to bring cultural
performances out of the sometimes stuffy and snobby, not to mention
costly, concert halls straight to the general public.