Jul 17, 2013

Improv Everywhere's "MP3 Experiment Ten"

I had the pleasure of celebrating this year's Bastille Day by photographing a flash mob at South Street Seaport held by Improv Everywhere.  They're the same group that puts together the No-Pants-Subway-Ride each year, amongst many other things.  This particular event was centered around a roughly 45-minute mp3 that participants played simultaneously in their headphones, which directed a long-form flash mob that included silent dance parties, paper airplane throwing, bubble blowing, and randomly giving observers a dollar (I was on the receiving end of this last part a few times, so I guess this was technically a paying gig).

I'd only heard about it on my way out the door, so I didn't get a chance to download the track or gather the necessary supplies (i.e. paper, bubbles, dollars...), so I had to (/got to) witness the flash mob with fresh eyes.  I've seen a good deal of flash mob videos online, but I don't think I've never seen so many people in once place.  Pier 17 was packed like Mumford and Sons was headlining a music festival on the river or something.  I'd wager it was one of the largest mass bubble-blowing events in recent history.  The part where everyone suddenly stood still like statues was also pretty entertaining, though I suppose the effect is lost in still photos.

I've been photographing a lot of improv-related things lately, between The Chris Gethard Show, The UCB's Del Close Marathon, and now this Improv Everywhere flash mob.  I've noticed a lot of overlap of friendly faces throughout, and I've really warmed to the whole community.  I've got a lot of appreciation (but perhaps little understanding) of the improv world as a whole, so I feel really lucky to have gained all the access and trust of these communities.  Or maybe that's just how networking works.  Anyway, here's pictures!

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