How to make strangers smile?

It was a typical over heated, frustrated 2.30pm on a very warm and over crowded milan metro, people minding their own business, old ladies, students, tourists, suited business men, all quietly and inwarding complaining about the heat and the smell of other people, avoiding eye contact, avoiding any contact all together with each other.

A man enters the metro at Cardona, he is in his late thirties, 1.90m tall , average build with a slight beer belly under his bright blue t-shirt, beige army pants, dark aviator style sun glasses, slightly unshaven and long dark hair tied up in a pony tail underneath his red baseball cap.

He stands in the middle of the aisle. He has a large black box with him. He takes from his left trouser pocket a small remote control. A metro bomber? In a way, yes..

Music starts.

He takes a microphone from his right pocket.
He launches into a full dance and singing number, awkward, playful, unlikely.

A suprise attack.

People sing along. People clap along. People smile at each, laugh with each other.

The over crowded metro, becomes his stage, and the people a willing audience.
As he breaks the codes of excepted behaviour in a public space, we happily follow him.

As the location takes on another context, so does the peoples behaviour with in it.

Martin Butler