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Symphony tries out texting

November 17, 2008
Sean Newhouse, associate conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, made an unusual request of his audience Nov. 6.

Toward the end of a one-hour concert, he asked everyone to take out their mobile phones and send a text message to vote for the finale: "Mambo" from "West Side Story," or "Danse Boheme" from "Carmen."

"Mambo" received 70 percent of the vote from the 100 concert-goers who chose to participate.

The ISO is trying text-voting during its Happy Hour at the Symphony series, which is aimed at a younger audience. In the future, symphony spokeswoman Jessica Di Santo said, concert-goers might receive messages about upcoming concerts, or updates on weather conditions at the annual outdoor event Symphony on the Prairie.

Those who took part in the voting Nov. 6 received a confirmation and reminder of the next happy hour concert date, Jan. 15. Di Santo said the ISO won't send any more text messages without first obtaining their patrons' permission.
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