Philip Glass At Occupy Lincoln Center, Reciting The Bhagavad Gita (VIDEO)
Yesterday, we reported composer Philip Glass was set to speak at an Occupy Wall Street protest outside the Met in Lincoln Center, where Glass' "Satyagraha" just ended its November run. Now we have footage of Glass' appearance, filmed by New Yorker music critic Alex Ross. Here's how Ross described the scene:
When the Satyagraha listeners emerged from the Met, police directed them to leave via side exits, but protesters began encouraging them to disregard the police, walk down the steps, and listen to Glass speak. Hesitantly at first, then in a wave, they did so. The composer proceeded to recite the closing lines of Satyagraha, which come from the Bhagavad-Gita (after 3:00 in the video above): "When righteousness withers away and evil rules the land, we come into being, age after age, and take visible shape, and move, a man among men, for the protection of good, thrusting back evil and setting virtue on her seat again." True to form, he said it several times, with the "human microphone" repeating after him. Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson were in attendance, and at one point Reed helped someone crawl over the barricade that had been set up along the sidewalk.
Glass' "Satyagraha," written in 1979, links Gandhian non-violence to the civil disobedience of Martin Luther King, both trenchant movements in light of the growing antagonism between OWS protests and police forces. You can read a post Glass wrote for us on the timeliness of his opera's message here, and watch footage of the Lincoln Center gathering below (as Ross wrote, Glass' speech starts 3 minutes in).