Ghost Ballet

Aycock & Purcell

I stopped by the dedication for the Ghost Ballet yesterday up on the Shelby St. Bridge. There was a quartet of symphony players making sweet music for everyone, free water and popsicles. Various accolades and thanks were given, to a remarkable extent (I’ve never clapped so much in my life).

Mayor Purcell spoke, and I thought it was actually a pretty good speech considering it was a one-off little dedication that he could have blown off with some banal rhetoric and went on his way. Then we heard from the woman of the hour herself: Alice Aycock, the artist behind the Ghost Ballet. She spoke about her motivations behind making the piece and how she tried to connect it to Nashville’s past and future. She spoke for quite a while, actually. A pretty long time. A good long while. I couldn’t resist posting the picture (above) of Purcell checking his watch towards the end of her speech. She even addressed the sentiment that it looks like a roller coaster. “Of course it does,” she said. She grew up near Hershey Park in PA. Alrighty then. But then where does the name “Ghost Ballet” come from? Shouldn’t it be called the Ghost Coaster or something? Screaming Demon? No?

It didn’t occur to me until yesterday also that the resemblance to a roller coaster may serve as the seed for mass disappointment from our tourist visitors:

Tourist #1: Wow, music city!
Tourist #2: I know! Check it out! The country music hall of fame!
Tourist #1: Hey there’s where the Predators used to play! (just joking, don’t kill me — chris)
Tourist #2: Sweet, lower broad! There’s tootsie’s!!
Tourist #1: Holy crap, they even have a roller coaster!! Best city ever!!

You can imagine where it goes from here. Disappointment, dejection. I dunno. Could be dangerous.

6 Comments so far

  1. Paul Nicholson (unregistered) on July 27th, 2007 @ 10:57 am

    She could have at least lied and said it look like a roller coaster in reference to the old Opryland theme park. Who cares that she grew up in Hershey, PA? That doesn’t mean she has to build an abstract coaster on the Cumberland River.

    I will say though, i just googled her and we could have had worse. She’s proposed some real gems for a project in Miami.

  2. Andrew (unregistered) on July 27th, 2007 @ 11:06 am

    Best thing about this post? Purcell checking his watch in the picture.

  3. Christy (unregistered) on July 27th, 2007 @ 12:14 pm

    Okay, so that picture is hilarious.

    I would tend to think that after it’s been sitting there for a while, people will either grow accustomed to it or even perhaps warm up to it. And then I remember this idea someone had here in Virginia a while ago to build a park with cement casts of all the presidents’ heads, which garnered a similar public reaction in our area. And yeah, everyone still hates it.

  4. Jay (unregistered) on July 27th, 2007 @ 3:09 pm

    You can imagine where it goes from here. Disappointment, dejection.

    Forty years of darkness. Earthquakes, volcanoes, the dead rising from the grave, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together – mass hysteria.

  5. Jim (unregistered) on July 28th, 2007 @ 7:29 am

    Overheard at an office while discussing options on where to take someone on a first date in Nashville:
    “When is that roller coaster opening they’re putting in downtown?”

  6. Andrew (unregistered) on August 1st, 2007 @ 3:40 pm

    I saw it today… God, it’s ugly. I want my tax dollars back.

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