During that time, approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.
A middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing.
The violinist received his first dollar.
Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while.
About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace.
The man had collected a total of $32.
No one noticed and no one applauded.
There was no recognition at all.
Joshua Bell, playing incognito in the D.C. Metro Station, was organized as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities.
This experiment raised several questions:
- In a common-place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?
- If so, do we stop to appreciate it?
- Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?
If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made . . .