(PART 731)


Another Awesome Clip From David Von Pein. .... A Boston Symphony Orchestra audience reacts to the news of President Kennedy's death. Makes the hairs on your neck stand on end. Thanks again, David! ....


That's the great Erich Leinsdorf giving his audience the tragic news. He was a fascinating musical marvel. I wish I'd heard him conduct at the Met or the City Opera here in NYC. Alas, he died some twenty five years ago. Here is an interesting interview with him.

And I've heard that sad clip before. Some years ago I came across a book and CD called "The President Has Been Shot" [sic; the actual title is "President Kennedy Has Been Shot", but why quibble?], and it includes many fascinating and tragic fly-on-the-wall moments like this one. I'm sure old DVP has them all on his web page.

The most difficult for me to listen to was the phone call from Ladybird Johnson to Kennedy's mother on November 22, 1963. There is also a recorded phone dispatch from a reporter on the scene who breaks down in tears as he gives his on-the-scene report of the president's death.

Once again, good work, Hoosier!


That Book/CD combo is very good indeed. It doesn't delve into every nook and cranny concerning "conspiracy" (which probably means that it's worthless as far as some CTers are concerned), but it does perform a good "minute-by-minute" type of chronicle of the events of November '63.

Some people here might also be interested in hearing some of the radio transmissions from Air Force One and the Boeing 707 jet that was carrying JFK's cabinet members to Japan when they got word of the shooting:


Maybe somebody here can answer this nagging question that I have concerning the Leinsdorf/Boston Symphony announcement from 11/22/63:

I have never been able to confirm just exactly WHERE the Boston Symphony was located when Leinsdorf made his announcement to the crowd.

I have always thought the Symphony was probably in England (London?) when the dramatic announcement was made, but I'm not sure.

Surely, though, the Symphony wasn't in the USA at the time, were they? If so, it seems to me to be a strange time for the Boston Symphony to be giving a concert--on a Friday MORNING or early afternoon?? That never happens...does it?


I've wondered about that as well. Let's see...the president was killed at 6:30pm London time. Allowing for some time to pass for the story to spread, and assuming the audience, musicians and conductor had been readying for the concert for an hour or so and were therefore out of the loop, it seems plausible that Leinsdorf's announcement could have occurred shortly after an 8pm curtain.

The only odd thing about this is that it is unusual for a symphony orchestra to be on tour shortly after the start of the season. An overseas tour would be quite unusual to say the least. Then there is the emotional response of the audience. Would an audience of Londoners react that way?

However, in Boston it was 1:30 in the afternoon when JFK was shot. Again, allowing for an hour or so, it must have been an afternoon concert if it was in Boston. That's odd too, for a Friday.

But if you consult your 'Bug' [Vincent Bugliosi's book], (surely sir, you have not failed to do this) you will see that he quotes a New York Times reporter describing this as taking place in Boston. So it seems that is the most likely answer despite the odd time.


Thanks, roark.

Yes, Mr. Bugliosi does indeed say in his book that the Symphony was in Boston on 11/22/63:

"In Boston...the Boston Symphony broke off a Handel concert to play a funeral march by Beethoven." -- Vincent Bugliosi; Page 98 of "Reclaiming History"

VB's Source Note -- "[Relman] Morin, 'Assassination', pp.78–79."

So, I guess it was an early afternoon concert in Boston, Massachusetts, on November 22, 1963. Seems mighty odd to me. But, oh well.

I should have, indeed, checked my "Reclaiming History" volume earlier concerning this matter. Incredibly, I failed to do so on this "Symphony" occasion, which was stupid on my part, since I almost always go straight to "RH" first when I'm in doubt about something.

I should be shot in the upper back with CE139 for such a hideous and egregious blunder!


David Von Pein
October 6, 2009