In Chicago, a flutist asks passersby to respond in real time with words, art

Posted on: August 22, 2018

In Chicago, every time flutist James Brinkmann “takes to the streets to play, he wants listeners to stop, draw or write what they feel while they’re listening to the music,” writes Darcel Rockett in Tuesday’s (8/21) Chicago Tribune. “Over the course of an hour on a Wednesday about six passersby stopped to engage with three to four minutes of Divertissement No. 2 in D Major Op. 68 composed by Friedrich Kuhlau. The group of strangers drew a scene with rivers, mountains, idyllic home, mossy fields and pyramids … as Brinkmann played…. Brinkmann, 29 … has been doing public performances for over a year in Chicago’s subways…. Some things he’s learned along the way: he has about 15 seconds to capture the attention of those walking by; there is no one age group that stops more than another, and it’s always hardest to get the first contributor to stop to express themselves in words or art…. The 2011 DePaul School of Music alumnus … has poster boards … stemming from his debut subway performance Jan. 31, 2017.” Brinkmann says his mission is “to encourage people to be more curious while listening to classical music and express their experiences and connection to the music.”

Posted August 22, 2018