Time For Three, a classically-trained string trio, was desperately trying to make it to a festival gig in Fayetteville, Arkansas, but one thing stood in their way: the pilot of their US Airways flight. What followed was perhaps the most beautiful form of complaint to an airline I have ever heard.
Most airline complaints involve hours spent on hold with customer service, or talking to a report, or sending increasingly mean tweets to an airlines Twitter account whereby they ignore you anyways. But that wasn't the case when the pilot wouldn't allow violinist Zach de Pue onboard if he wanted to bring his instrument.
The whole situation gets more and more ridiculous as de Pue, undeterred, sweetly plays Bach's Prelude from the Sonata in E Major BWV 1006, and crew members stepping out of the plane to gather luggage look more and more pissed off.
Nick Kendall, the band member filming the video, and de Pue eventually made it to Arkansas, but not without a bit of a faff before getting there, according to the Indy Star:
"The 2 of us were just standing there planeside for a good 10 min before the [complaint resolutions officer] came. There was no getting around it. We could either put the violins under the plane, or forfeit the flight," wrote Kendall in an email. "We decided to forfeit the flight."
Good on them, for standing for their rights, and for now getting all this free advertising for their band. And yes, taking a violin on a flight is their right, as the Star points out:
In 2012, congress passed the FAA Modernization and Reform Act, which states, "An air carrier providing air transportation shall permit a passenger to carry a violin, guitar, or other musical instrument in the aircraft cabin or under a passenger seat, without charging the passenger a fee in addition to any standard fee that carrier may require for comparable carry-on baggage."
US Airways, for their part, has now come across all apologetic, because of course they did when faced with the angry wrath of a Bach sonata:
"We sincerely apologize for not only their delay, but what occurred at the airport," said Bill McGlashen, a spokesperson for U.S. Airways. "We did accommodate them on a later flight to Fayetteville and we wish them good luck and good playing at the festival."