Dear New York Philharmonic: Please Don't Call Me In The Middle Of Performances To Ask For Money

As I enjoyed the New York Philharmonic’s production of Tosca this past Tuesday, I received a solicitation call. From the New York Philharmonic.

My phone was thankfully on silent, so I didn’t notice the missed a call until the first intermission. When I got home, I looked up the strange number: (212) 875-0583. To my shock, here’s what I found:
The Philharmonic called again on Thursday. Here’s approximately how the conversation went.

New York Philharmonic: I’m calling to invite Mr. and Mrs. Greenberg-Berger to subscribe to our 2008-2009 season.
Me: Do you realize that you called on Tuesday when I was at the Philharmonic?
NYP: Really? Oh no. But your phone wasn’t on, right?
Me: No, it wasn’t. Because that would have been inconsiderate.

Concerts usually start at 7:30 or 8:00, but the Philharmonic makes solicitation calls until 8:30. Apparently, they don’t check purchase histories to make sure that their marks aren’t already in the audience. Nor do they care if people have repeatedly, expressly, asked not to be called.

This wasn’t even the Friends of the New York Philharmonic, with whom I’ve previously expressed my displeasure and frustration, but the Philharmonic itself.

I understand why the Philharmonic is a vicious fundraiser: renovating Avery Fischer Hall won’t be cheap, and the youngins just aren’t flocking to hear the orchestra’s stunning performances. I empathize. Really, I do. But please, again, I beg of you—stop calling me! Especially if I’m already there!

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