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10 May 2019, 10:13 | Updated: 10 May 2019, 16:45
A young child broke the silence at the end of a concert with an awe-stricken ‘wow!’ – and now, the orchestra has invited him to meet their artistic director.
There’s nothing quite like a child’s unbridled reaction to beautiful music.
At a recent classical concert in Boston, the Handel and Haydn (H+H) Society had just finished a spectacular performance of Mozart’s Masonic Funeral Music.
Conducted by Harry Christophers, the H+H society is one of the oldest American performing arts groups.
After a brief moment of silence, a child in the audience exclaimed, ‘Wow!’. The awe in his voice made the whole audience and ensemble erupt into laughter and applause, with the orchestra’s CEO David Snead describing it as “one of the most wonderful moments I’ve experienced in the concert hall”.
After the concert, the orchestra began looking for the child – and now, the boy’s grandfather has got in touch.
Nine-year-old Ronan is a huge music fan, says his grandfather, Stephen Mattin.
Mattin, who took his grandson to the concert, said he ”talked about nothing else for weeks.”
Ronan didn’t mean to be disruptive, he told WGBH, explaining that his grandson is on the autism spectrum, and expresses himself in a different way to other people.
“I can count on one hand the number of times that [he’s] spontaneously ever come out with some expression of how he’s feeling,” Mattin said.
Mattin reached out to the orchestra after his sister-in-law saw on television that the Handel and Haydn Society was looking for the ‘wow kid’. The Society has now invited the family, who lives in Kensington, New Hampshire, to meet the artistic director.
Since the clip was posted on Twitter by Boston radio station WCRB, people have been sharing their reactions:
I was there and was an extraordinary moment. The kid’s “Wow” was the best recognition for Mozart’s music and this wonderful orchestra— Marco A. Torres-H (@MarcoATorresH) May 7, 2019
as a life-long music educator -- THIS. IS. EVERYTHING. Beautiful child, may you continue to feel awe, wonder, and love throughout your life as you did in this moment!— MaryBeth Smith (@divamover) May 9, 2019
Its wonderful for someone so young to appreciate great music. I hope you find her or him. WOW indeed...🎻🎶🎼— 💐🌷Nikki🌊 (@80sretro215) May 9, 2019
Mattin said he wasn’t expecting his grandson’s exclamation, but was glad the orchestra and audience were touched by it.
“You know, everybody’s different. Everybody has different ways of expressing themselves,” he said. “I think people in general, society’s becoming more tolerant or understanding of the differences between people.”