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Shuttle News

The Exclusive Concert NASA Won't Tell You About (Update)

By Keith Cowing
NASA Watch
May 23, 2011
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NASA HQ Solicitation: Space Shuttle 30th Anniversary: The Space Philarmonic (sp)
“NASA/HQ has a requirement for an ensemble by The Space Philharmonic group to perform a symphonic concert in honor of the 50th Anniversary of Human Space Flight: The Kennedy Legacy scheduled to take place on May 25th, 2011.”
NASA HQ Solicitation: The Kennedy Legacy: 50th Anniversary of U.S. Human Space Flight
“NASA/HQ has a requirement for a venue and associated services to host a free concert in honor of NASA’s 50th Anniversary of U.S. Human Spaceflight: “The Kennedy Legacy” scheduled to take place on May 25th, 2011. NASA/HQ intends to purchase the items from John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts pursuant to FAR 13.106, for the acquisition of supplies or services determined to be reasonably available from only one source.”
Keith’s 11 May note: Of course, the only tickets available in advance for this exclusive, yet-to-be-announced event will probably only be available to VIPs, NASA employees and their families (that’s the standard procedure). As for the cost of this exclusive concert? Who knows. NASA now takes 6+ months to respond to FOIA requests, so that is a waste of time. P.S. the operative word in this solicitation is actually spelled “Philharmonic”.
This Kennedy Center event on 25 May 2011: NASA presents: Human Spaceflight: The Kennedy Legacy notes: “This is a FREE event; reserved seating tickets are required. Tickets will be distributed, two (2) per person in line, beginning at 5 p.m. in the Hall of Nations on the day of the performance. Please note that free parking isNOT available when picking up free tickets or attending free performances.” But of course NASA will already have the lion’s share of these tickets handed out in advance, thus forcing everyone else to drive into town, park (at their own expense) and then wait in line for hours for a chance to get tickets. Why not try doing this online? Nah. That’s too 21st century. And will they webcast the event? Its not listed on the NASA TV schedule.
Keith’s 23 May update: According to NASA PAO, this is mostly an employee-only event with tickets distributed to various divisions and directorates at NASA HQ. 1,000 or so tickets will be available to the public albeit at the last minute – you show up a few hours before the event for the chance to get a ticket. These restrictions come from the Kennedy Center – and the Kennedy Center is donating the use of their facilities. Media will be invited (short notice on that too) but will face limited recording time of the actual performance due to union rules – and those union rules for the musicians will not allow NASA to broadcast the event in any way. No word on what this event cost – yet. Too bad NASA could not have chosen an event that was more accesible to the rest of the agency’s employees as well as the public who pays for all of these events. They have known about this event for weeks – still no public (official) mention.
Keith’s 23 May update: The Kennedy Center has changed their website to read “This is a FREE event; reserved seating tickets are required, but have limited availability. Tickets are available through the Presenter only. Contact NASA Guest Operations, 202-358-1750 for more information. Please note that free parking is NOT available when picking up free tickets or attending free performances.”
Alan Ladwig just posted this on Facebook: “NASA is sponsoring an event at the Kennedy Ctr, Wed, 5/25 to commemorate the 50th Anniver of Human Spaceflight & JFK’s challenge to go to Moon. Event is at Concert Hall from 7:00 – 8:30 pm & features the Space Philharmonic Orchestra. The Center just turned over all the tickets they were going to distribute to the public so we have available seats. If interested let me know pronto.”
Keith’s 23 May update: NASA Honors Human Spaceflight Achievements at Kennedy Center Concert
“A limited number of tickets is available for the general public on a first-come, first-served basis. To attend the free event, please contact NASA Guest Operations at 202-358-1750. Tickets for those who RSVP will be available at NASA’s Will Call tables, which will be staffed in front of the Concert Hall (in the Grand Foyer) from 5-6:45 p.m. Wednesday.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.