Poll

If you're the only one standing in your section at a concert:

Sit down. I don't want people to get mad.
8 (80%)
Remain standing. It's a concert. And I PAID for these tickets
2 (20%)

Total Members Voted: 10

Author Topic: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....  (Read 4015 times)

MattDrufke

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Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« on: August 28, 2015, 07:56:29 AM »
Ok. Quick story about something that happened last night at Billy Joel:

(SET-UP: We're at Wrigley Field. The stage is in deep center field. There are seats all in the outfield. I'm with my girlfriend, her father and his wife. We're in section 223 of Wrigley, which is on the lower level, but pretty far back- maybe 70 rows. We're in the second to last row before the main area of food/beer vendors and exit ramps)

Billy Joel comes onstage and begins with a rocker ("Big Shot"). The crowd is having fun. Everyone in the close outfield seats stand up and begin rocking. Everyone where I am remains seated... except for one woman, about 10 rows down from me. She is in her late twenties (WOMAN A) and (let's call it) dancing: swaying back and forth and waving her arms around. Honestly, if someone made a bad movie that wanted to involve a comedy scene about someone dancing poorly at a concert, it would be this woman. It was laughable what she was doing.

Joel begins his second song, and it's clear that WOMAN A is going to be dancing the whole concert. The people seated directly behind her are clearly getting agitated, so WOMAN B, seated right behind her, clearly asks her if she could just sit down because it's making things hard to see. While I'm not sure exactly what was said, it's clear that WOMAN A said that she would not do that. She tries to go back to dancing, but is now being spoken to by B & B's four rowmates. Finally, A sits down, clearly irate. She spends the next few songs pouting (both in person and on her phone) and glaring back and sharing harsh words with B. (The only sentence I clearly point out is A yelling at B, "Don't say another [expletive]-ing word to me!")

As the night moves on, there are moments when we are all standing (Joel brings out 25 or so members of the military, and we are all on our feet when he closes with "Piano Man" and throughout his entire encore).  But, for most of the show, my entire section (a group of 300 or so) remain seated. There are a few exceptions (two twenty-somes decide to shimmy their way through "We Didn't Start The Fire" & "River Of Dreams"), but not really. This had me looking around the ballpark (specifically the area where people would sit during games) and notice that for the most part people were sitting, except for the rare swathe of people who just did not care. And it made me think about one time when I was in the Riv balcony seeing Ben Folds and I was asked to sit down.

So, who is right? If you're at a concert and everyone around you is sitting, should you remain seated? Or, should you follow your (assumably) alcohol-fueled heart and dance like no one is watching?
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MattDrufke

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2015, 08:04:05 AM »
My take on it is WOMAN A has to sit down. Don't ruin everyone's view just because you've got the spirit of dance in you.
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verbALs

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2015, 08:11:37 AM »
You gotta get up to get down.
I used to encourage everyone I knew to make art; I don't do that so much anymore. - Banksy

Corndog

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2015, 08:24:59 AM »
Such a tricky question because I think everyone should be entitled to enjoy the concert in their own way within reason, and that includes standing up and dancing. But it's difficult because so many others would prefer to remain sitting and hopefully still be able to see everything. Not really sure there is a right answer in certain settings. That is why I like venues that are General Admission where, if you want to party, you go to the front "pit", and if you want to relax, you hang back on the lawn or balcony if you prefer. I go to quite a few concerts where it is standing only, which takes the question out of it. But with more established artists, the venue is more likely to be a nice theater with seating, or an arena or stadium with seating, making the answer to this question difficult.
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MartinTeller

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2015, 10:21:33 AM »
The answer is C) Go dance in the aisle

ses

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2015, 10:33:37 AM »
I get annoyed when the consensus is to sit down and one or two people are up dancing.  Go somewhere like the back or out of the way, where you can dance and not ruin it for everyone else.  If everyone is standing up the whole time, then dance all you want.
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colonel_mexico

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2015, 10:34:31 AM »
Obviously B row has not been to a Mars Volta concert
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verbALs

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2015, 10:39:36 AM »
Can you stand up at a gig and not dance? Stand still with music playing? Music isn't a spectator sport IMHO.
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Jared

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2015, 10:45:56 AM »
In my younger and more vulnerable years I would often find myself somewhat intoxicated at sporting events, and thus I often found myself standing and being loud. If some one asked me to sit down I did. No big deal  8)

Sandy

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Re: Concert etiquette 101: To stand or not to stand....
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2015, 11:46:04 AM »
Maybe they could divide the friendly confines into sections, like upper deck - glued to your seats, terrace box - intermittent dancing and field box - full on mosh pit!


My observation is if the performer is sitting (Billy Joel's earned that), most of the audience is sitting too. :)
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