Friday, October 07, 2005

This is a concert, this ain't church

My friend and I went to the Dolly Parton concert recently, held at the newly revamped Gideon Amphitheatre at Universal Studios. It was a lovely concert, as Dolly is a consummate entertainer. Except....

For the row of several women behind us. I looked around and, yep, we were so lucky. Nobody in our immediate vicinity was being subjected to the talking, the singing, the catcalls, the uproarious behavior.

I say they were "adults." They didn't act like it. They were, I'm guessing, in their mid- to late-20's. They were obviously fans, and seemed to know Dolly's entire repertoire, as they knew every song, every line in every song.

I leaned back during the first song and politely asked the two women on the end to stop talking. They stared at me but stopped, at least momentarily. Then, the three women next to them started talking in the very next song. The young man next to them, part of their group, asked them to quiet down. They didn't. I leaned back again and asked them to please stop.

"What is your problem? This is a concert, not church," one of them blatantly said.

I've been in this same situation before. The worst was during a Linda Ronstadt concert at the Concord Pavilion several years ago. I had paid $100 for my seat, and couldn't figure out why the five people next to me were talking through her songs, every song. I asked them to shut up several times, but was rewarded with drinks spilled over me and elbows to my shoulder and face as they got up repeatedly.

You can't talk to alcohol. I know that. I stubbornly continue, but in this case, I tried to listen to Dolly and tune out the young woman directly behind me who came in late but made up for it by yelling "JOLENE!!" in a drunken slur many times after Dolly had already sung it.

This may not be church, but if we could've heard Dolly sing, it would've been closer to it.

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