Aarian Marshall is a transportation reporter at WIRED and former CityLab contributor. She lives in San Francisco.
Magical things happen at midnight in New York City.
You have not-that-many hours to get yourself and your favorite dog to New York’s Times Square, for what promises to be a kooky artistic experience. On Monday, January 4, between the hours of 11:30 p.m. and 12:00 a.m., the famed New York performance artist Laurie Anderson will stage a canine takeover of the light-filled landmark with a concert audible only to dogs.
What sorts of music do pups appreciate? It involves string instruments, of course, which Anderson knows because she’s done this before. Reports The New York Times:
[Anderson] and friends put on a concert for hundreds of dogs outside the Sydney Opera House, with the music emitted from speakers at a low, dog-friendly frequency. (She didn’t want to risk shocking the dogs with a high frequency.) At the end, they began to bark — even the droolers in the front row. “It was a beautiful sound,” she said. “They barked for five minutes. That was one of the happiest moments of my life.”
If you’re still finding this hard to visualize, you are in luck, because there is video. It legitimately seems like a wonderful time:
The concert is the January installment of the running Times Square series “Midnight Moment,” during which the ad-laden stretch of Broadway and 7th Avenue becomes a synchronized presentation of digital art.
The concert will conclude with a 3-minute cut of Anderson’s feature film The Heart of a Dog, which ruminates on her rat terrier, Lolabelle, post-9/11 surveillance culture, love, and the deaths of the artist’s mother and husband (musician Lou Reed). The short will play on Times Square’s famous billboards every evening for the rest of January, between 11:57 p.m. and midnight.
Sherry Dobbin, the director of Times Square Arts, told the Times that the concert also has symbolic importance for New Yorkers of the human variety. “New Year’s Eve is one of these moments where [Times Square has] the whole world coming together for a loud and intense celebration,” she said. “It’s also good to know that people can participate in something more intimate and delicate.” Dog-friendly, too.
H/t Atlas Obscura