Unwanted Theater Lighting


The holiday season is upon us and that means school concerts, plays and recitals. As hard as these are to attend due to other obligations and the bustle of the season there is now a new distraction. It seems most people have now learned how to silence their cell phones during performances. However, as I was attending a performance of 42nd Street at the High School last night it seems a new blight is occurring in the audiences. Basically it is ignorant people texting and surfing the internet on their ‘mobile’ device causing light pollution and visual distractions for other members of the audience.

In a theater of about 300 people I saw 7 people constantly texting and/or surfing. Of the 7, two were on tablets so the light from these was very distracting despite being some distance from me.  It is also disturbing to note that of the seven, five were definitely too old to be High School students and the woman in the row ahead of me was in her 40’s. That lady tried to cover the light by placing her coat over her phone through most of the play. It did little to reduce the distracting light for those of us behind her. I’m not sure, but this woman was there with her mother and two daughters.  Nice example lady!

This coming week is the choir concert. I wonder if this rudeness will occur there? Perhaps I just picked the performance where the hooligans decided to attend? I hope so…, but then again it seems that even movie theaters are having this issue and some are even considering allowing texting during movies since young people are OK with it. I guess that just gives me another reason to avoid movie theaters.

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