Disturbances at the Proms

The BBC ends a broadcast prematurely "due to disturbances in the Royal Albert Hall."(Photo: BBC)
The BBC ends a broadcast prematurely "due to disturbances in the Royal Albert Hall."(Photo: BBC)

BBC 3 took a live relay from London’s Royal Albert Hall off the air mid-concert on September 1, when a performance by the Israel Philharmonic was interrupted by protests from the audience. A number of pro-Palestinian organizations had earlier called for boycotts of this concert and for picketing outside the vast Albert Hall. Zubin Mehta was conducting a program that included Burch’s First Violin Concerto with Gil Shaham.

It is reported by the BBC and the Times of London that pockets of protesters were interspersed throughout the 8,000 seat hall. Here’s some amateur video of the goings on:

The BBC may have ducked out, but it’s good to note that neither Shaham, Mehta nor the Israel Philharmonic did anything but play, giving 99.99% of the audience their considerable best.

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