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Class of 2014’s Senior Citizens Thrilled with Selection of Commencement Speaker

4 Apr
muti5

(via voices.suntimes.com)

EVANSTON, Il. – The news that Riccardo Muti, music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, was tabbed as this year’s commencement speaker for Northwestern University was met with overwhelming excitement on Thursday by the large contingent of senior citizens in the Class of 2014.

“I’m a pretty a typical Northwestern student. I have seven grandchildren, reading glasses, and a hip replacement,” explained eighty-five year-old Weinberg senior Wilfred O. Rumpelstein. “So I think I speak for all of my classmates when I say that a classical music director is kind of a dream selection for the speaker that will wrap up my college experience.”

Campus officials explained that the decision was an easy one. “We’re very happy with the selection of Riccardo Muti as this year’s commencement speaker,” said one campus official on Thursday. “We were looking for someone who represented the interests of the outgoing class and a seventy-two year old, Italian classical music conductor seemed like the obvious choice.”

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40 Responses to “Class of 2014’s Senior Citizens Thrilled with Selection of Commencement Speaker”

  1. Well. April 4, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

    Fuck you Sherman Ave.

  2. Disappointed... April 4, 2014 at 9:51 pm #

    This is perhaps the most disrespectful thing I’ve seen on this (usually) great site. I can’t believe that the writers would trash this great speaker (and if you don’t believe me, check out the transcript from his speech at DePaul last year: http://music.depaul.edu/NewsandEvents/docs/Muti_speech_in_CSO_program_book.pdf) without considering that maybe he deserves the benefit of the doubt. What I’m most upset about is the number of people that will go into this wonderful ceremony without an open mind to hear what this great guy has to say to us. Why write someone off so early and without any attention paid to what else he’s done beyond conduct one of the world’s greatest orchestras?
    ALSO what if a CSO rep or Muti himself were to see this? I’m so embarrassed by this, and I believe it needs to be taken down immediately.

  3. UGH April 4, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

    What the fuck is wrong with you guys? This is a terrible article. You’re relegating classical music to some terrible place reserved only for old people. There’s an entire undergraduate and graduate SCHOOL dedicated to the type of music this guy works with.

  4. Embarassed April 4, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

    This disgusts me. Normally your pieces are humorous, without just blatantly insulting individual people, not to mention individual people who happen to be the music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Do you realize that the Chicago Symphony Orchestra is the best orchestra in the country and in the top five of orchestras in the WORLD? The CSO is a vital part of Chicago’s cultural and artistic identity (and the world’s) and Northwestern is lucky to be near them – it is an honor to have Muti as commencement speaker. Tagging this “unpopular,” “old,” “hip replacement”? Who do YOU want for commencement speaker, Miley Cyrus? Seriously. Get over yourself and show some respect.

    • SMH April 5, 2014 at 6:28 pm #

      Miley Cyrus would be kind of dope, low key.

  5. a music student April 4, 2014 at 10:08 pm #

    “So I think I speak for all of my classmates when I say that a classical music director is kind of a dream selection for the speaker that will wrap up my college experience.”

    I can say that statement genuinely. I actually think it’s pretty impressive that you managed to alienate the entirety of Bienen in one article. I, for one, am done reading this website.

  6. Human April 4, 2014 at 10:23 pm #

    Typical idiotic freshman article.

  7. Disappointed and ashamed April 4, 2014 at 10:29 pm #

    I want to start off by saying this is a very disrespectful article. I understand that many have had a shockingly similar reaction to the one this article outlines. I think those who agree with this article are missing a few key points about the fact Riccardo Muti is this year’s speaker.
    First, let’s not kid ourselves, Northwestern is a university that prides itself on being highly cultured and classed, and the seemingly negative outlook many have had on this only shows what a false sense of self this university has. If we represent the future of a well-educated society, with that comes the responsibility to be open-minded and learned in all types of education and professions, including the fine arts. If one’s reaction to this news is negative, it only shows an ignorance and intolerance for subcultures unbeknownst to that individual, and this type of behavior is unacceptable at an institution that strives to be tolerant and accepting. If we are to be truly intelligent individuals, we must embrace the fine arts as being just as important and legitimate as science, math, politics, etc. because they are just as much a part of who we are as individuals and as a community.
    Second, I understand that everyone wants a speaker that they recognize, but hard work and success are universal traits and should be appreciated across all professions. I’d like to see what he has to say before I judge the fact that he’s speaking. When I judge that speech, it won’t be about what his profession is but what his message is and how it can be used by everyone going into varied fields.
    I am utterly astonished and ashamed that my colleagues could have such an ignorant reaction to what should be incredibly exciting news. We should all feel honored that such an accomplished individual would take time out of their schedule to speak to us.

    • Disappointed.... April 4, 2014 at 10:41 pm #

      Way to shit all over the entire Bienen school of music and classical lovers everywhere. Fuck off, Sherman Ave.

  8. Why so rude April 4, 2014 at 10:39 pm #

    Are you fucking serious?

  9. Wow April 4, 2014 at 10:45 pm #

    I’m getting the opportunity to study with the musicians of this orchestra this summer. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It’s an HONOR to have Muti. I hope to god he (or any members of the orchestra) don’t come across this piece of shit article.

  10. NU student April 4, 2014 at 10:45 pm #

    This post upsets me. Muti is one of the most gifted and gracious musicians on the planet. He has brought so much beauty and art to Chicago & the world. He is internationally known. One of the gazillions of awesome things he’s done: he starts each Chicago Symphony Orchestra season by bringing a huge free concert to Chicago…this season it was in Cicero and 1,000s of people came, including the very young. It was also broadcast to schools for free, and Muti treated the kids and their families to their very own receptions after the telecast. This man is changing the world & devoting one’s life to music is timeless…the man is still working at 72 because he’s THAT PASSIONATE about his mission to bring classical music to the community. This man deserves our utmost respect.

  11. Bienen professor April 4, 2014 at 11:01 pm #

    You’ve now proved your website is worthless and not remotely representing the values of Northwestern University. You’ve also disrespected an entire School that has helped make Northwestern a world brand in classical music. I speak for us all in Bienen and sensible NU students when I say you are an embarrassment.

    • Really? April 6, 2014 at 1:39 pm #

      Are you actually a professor? Are you a full-grown adult whose ego is so astoundingly fragile that you can’t take gentle ribbing about your passion?

      I am glad that my professors were the sort of folks who are confident enough in the worth of their subjects that they’re not thrown into a frothy rage by mild satire. I would be embarrassed to have learned under someone like you.

      • Really?? April 6, 2014 at 1:49 pm #

        No matter which side of the argument you’re on, that’s astoundingly disrespectful. Imagine yourself actually saying that to this Bienen professor and not hiding like a coward behind your computer from a safe distance.

        -Michael Gandlmayr

  12. Bienen Student April 4, 2014 at 11:19 pm #

    I have been a consistent Sherman Ave. reader and fan up until now. Not only is this disrespectful to Muti himself, but it negatively impacts the Bienen School of Music. I for one, am extremely upset by this close-minded article. I will no longer support your website .

  13. Saddened at the Unbelievably Predictable April 4, 2014 at 11:38 pm #

    Perhaps one of the authors of Sherman Avenue believes he/she would make a better Commencement speaker, who could give a unique, imaginative speech that would overwhelmingly excite the infantile members of the class of 2014.

  14. Northwestern Alum April 4, 2014 at 11:54 pm #

    Recent Northwestern grad and not a music major, but as an amateur musician and classical music lover, I had to comment on this. I appreciate satire as much as the next person but this went too far. You realize Northwestern has one of the best music schools in the country and resides in a city with a world class symphony led by a highly respected conductor. I would have been ecstatic to have Muti as my commencement speaker when I graduated a couple years ago and I am saddened to see this kind of sentiment come out of a school that I loved attending. Terrible satire made in poor taste.

  15. So disgusted April 4, 2014 at 11:58 pm #

    If you have any self-respect at all, take this down. What an utterly disgusting and disrespectful piece of work.

  16. laaaaame April 5, 2014 at 12:31 am #

    so non dancers were pissed that Mikhail Baryshnikov spoke at commencement last year?
    hahahah… satire’s hard to do, guys. being smart is a really important part of writing satire that doesn’t cross the line. you just seem so ignorant through this article. whoever wrote it should do some research besides making funny of something that’s totally not true

    • SMH April 5, 2014 at 6:30 pm #

      Oh my god, what is wrong with you people? Who the fuck said you need to do *research* to write a satire article? Are you high? WHO CARES

  17. Yeahhh April 5, 2014 at 12:43 am #

    Probably written by someone who didn’t know what the cso was until they came here and probably still don’t know that is THE BEST orchestra in the country. Have some respect. Musicians, especially conductors, can be extremely personable and entertaining

  18. Wtf April 5, 2014 at 12:47 am #

    If you have any respect for your website you should take this article down

  19. ProudofMuti April 5, 2014 at 12:48 am #

    I am a huge fan of Sherman Ave, but this article takes it a step too far. Riccardo Muti is a well respected and world renowned conductor in the music world. Even if you aren’t a music person or even if you hate classical music there is a lesson to be learned from a man who followed his passion and became one of the best at what he loved. Muti could have retired, but he didnt, because he loves what he does and it makes him happy. Is that not what we all strive for in life? Sorry Sherman Ave, this article is not only an embarrassment for your organization, but it reflects horribly on NU. To anyone who may read this: northwestern kids do appreciate our commencement speaker. We love you
    I am a huge fan of Sherman Ave, but this article takes it a step too far. Riccardo Muti is a well respected and world renowned conductor in the music world. Even if you aren’t a music person or even if you hate classical music there is a lesson to be learned from a man who followed his passion and became one of the best at what he loved. Muti could have retired, but he didnt, because he loves what he does and it makes him happy. Is that not what we all strive for in life? Sorry Sherman Ave, this article is not only an embarrassment for your organization, but it reflects horribly on NU. To anyone who may read this: northwestern kids do appreciate our commencement speaker. We love you Muti!

  20. Today I learned April 5, 2014 at 12:53 am #

    music people apparently can’t take a joke.

    • I like Sherman ave but April 5, 2014 at 12:57 am #

      It was actually funny until this comment “So I think I speak for all of my classmates when I say that a classical music director is kind of a dream selection for the speaker that will wrap up my college experience.”
      Just too far.

    • ProudofMuti April 5, 2014 at 1:06 am #

      It’s not about taking a joke. It’s about this being the public perception of how much Northwestern appreciates Muti. This article is disrespectful and it’s disappointing to think Muti or anyone else would read this and take it to be a reflection of NU

      • Embarassed April 5, 2014 at 10:04 pm #

        PRECISELY

    • Seriously? April 5, 2014 at 1:14 am #

      Jokes are supposed to be funny. The author can’t seriously suspect that he can write this simple-minded trash and pass it off as “satire”. If you’re wondering why the “music people” can’t take a joke, it’s because this article is an insult to our life’s work. I hate to generalize, but the fact that this point of view is seen as acceptable by ANY of the people at our university is disheartening. I know that this is supposed to be humorous, but it only serves to make our university appear ignorant and shallow. To the author: I hope you’re not this much of an asshole in real life.

  21. Bienen April 5, 2014 at 12:55 am #

    Please, as a Bienen student, take this down. It is extremely embarassing and distasteful

  22. Another Outraged Bienen Student April 5, 2014 at 1:38 am #

    I think that we should all sign a petition against Sherman Ave at our next Bridge Club meeting

  23. Doc April 5, 2014 at 3:49 pm #

    Please read this immediately before commenting:
    http://sherman-ave.com/2014/04/05/regarding-yesterdays-article-on-riccardo-muti/

    Favorite part: “But consider this: When a reader says that an article like this takes a “step too far,” that reader is, indirectly, insinuating that the other risks we have taken in the past – risks that have been far more explicitly offensive than this one – are not taking a “step too far.” Furthermore, the reader is operating under the ideal that jokes about other types of students or people are acceptable, but jokes about that reader, and the type of student that reader is, are not. This line of thinking puts the reader on a higher plateau than the other students at this university; it adds a greater weight to his/her own interests, opinions, and actions.”

    Please Bienen it is a 3 paragraph article which is perfectly good satire.

  24. Satire doh April 5, 2014 at 3:54 pm #

    SHERMAN AVE please remove the article about Chance the Rapper. It is a step too far. Chance has revolutionized rap and essential to many northwesterner’s lives. You’re job as a satirical publication is not to hurt people’s feelings. Love you Chance!

  25. Not a Bienen student April 5, 2014 at 4:02 pm #

    GEE SHERMAN AVE YOU REALLY DROPPED THE BALL ON THIS ONE

  26. buschmusic April 5, 2014 at 5:21 pm #

    Funny, Northwestern got a speaker who appeals to seniors to speak to the senior class of 2014.

  27. HONESTLY April 6, 2014 at 3:28 am #

    The fact that this article is what my peers at this school find disrespectful is elitist and embarrassing. If this is the “ignorance” that you choose to call out on a public forum, if this is what you think it means to feel “alienated,” or if this is piece what you’d consider going “too far,” kindly leave.

    There are a million stereotypes that deserve confronting. “Classical music is for old people” is not one of them.

    • Ryan April 6, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

      Fuck that.

    • Ryan April 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm #

      Excuse me; what I should say is, who are you to say classical music is a passion worth less than the ones you happen to find compelling? I expect you to comment on every other Sherman Ave article, because each one will use one of the “million stereotypes that deserve confronting” as the butt of its joke.

  28. Bienen Student April 6, 2014 at 12:35 pm #

    If Riccardo Muti read this, I imagine his reaction would be one of “Haha, older people are more prone to like classical music”, “Haha, it’s funny because college students actually like classical music, too”, or “How did I get to this website? I don’t care what these people have to say.”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. I Took a Class Pass/No Pass, and So Should You | Sherman Ave - April 18, 2014

    […] Week 8: My friends taking the class for a grade now realize the Herculean efforts it requires, and I’m just sitting pretty. They were fooled though. Sherman Ave sold them a false bill of goods, saying the course was an easy A. Incorrect. Shame on you, Sherman Ave. You should be run out of town on a rail. […]

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