It probably happens far more often that some might think, but animals aren’t all that shy when it comes to walking out on stage during concerts. One of the more recent examples was caught on video during a Vienna Chamber Orchestra concert with pianist Fazil Say in Ephesus, Turkey June 20th.
Say posted the video showing the dog casually walking out on stage and settling in at the concertmaster’s feet.
During my time as a camper at the Interlochen National Music Camp (as it was called back then), I remember a cat who used to show up and sit just offstage during every concert at Kresge Auditorium. S/he would sit and watch for most of the performance until one night toward the end of summer, something possessed the cat to bolt across the stage during a concert that used organ and, of course, it made a beeline right for the foot pedals.
Apparently, the conductor was completely unaware the cat was on stage and thought the organist was to blame.
It made for an intermission straight out of a bad 80s sitcom with said conductor tearing the high-school age organist a new opening until the been-there, done-that stage manager clued in the maestro. Awkward apologies and forced levity followed.
It’s rare to find someone in the field who doesn’t have a good animal-during-an-event anecdote. What’s yours?