TIME Drugs

Rocky Mountain High: Colorado Symphony Unrolls ‘Classical Cannabis’ Series

Denver Marijuana Celebration
Partygoers dance and smoke pot on the first of two days at the annual 4/20 marijuana festival in Denver on April 19, 2014 Brennan Linsley—AP

In a bid to attract a new and younger listenership, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra (CSO) is staging special summer concerts at which the audience will be encouraged to roll up and toke on the state’s now legal marijuana

In a bid to attract a new and younger listenership, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra (CSO) is staging a summer classical-music series in Denver at which the audience will be encouraged to toke up on the state’s now legal weed while enjoying the orchestra’s beautiful repertoire.

Billed as “Classically Cannabis: The High Note Series,” the program is being sponsored by a number of companies hailing from the state’s burgeoning, four-month-old marijuana industry.

Organizers point out, however, that pot will not be sold at the shows, which are strictly Bring Your Own Cannabis.

Promoters are hoping the BYOC events will give a financial boost to an orchestra that has been long plagued by financial setbacks.

“Part of our goal is to bring in a younger audience and a more diverse audience, and I would suggest that the patrons of the cannabis industry are both younger and more diverse than the patrons of the symphony orchestra,” CSO executive director Jerry Kern told the Denver Post.

However, some classical-music fans are not quite as convinced that bud and Beethoven make appropriate bedfellows.

“I know that the symphony needs new sponsors, and they are trying to go after a younger group,” local-event organizer Judith Inman told the Associated Press. “I just don’t think this is the way to go about it.”

Maybe not. But then again, marijuana has often been used to make very long, complex pieces of music more palatable. Just ask any Grateful Dead fan.

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