Why violinist Glen Donnelly jumped out of a plane naked playing ‘The Lark Ascending’ | The Washington Post
As the Australian musician hurtled out of a plane 15,000 feet above land, he cradled a violin on his shoulder. During his 60-second free fall through a clear blue sky on Sunday, Glen Donnelly, who turned 30 that day, played himself “Happy Birthday.”
The hairs of his bow started to come undone, waving wildly in the wind at high altitude. Donnelly — who played professionally with the London Symphony Orchestra — kept performing. As his parachute opened, he played, with a few stops and starts, “The Lark Ascending” by Ralph Vaughan Williams.
“Why am I doing this,” Donnelly had said earlier, as the skydiving plane ascended high above the ocean and white sands of Coffs Harbour north of Sydney.
Had any casual onlookers been watching the descent, they might have agreed. After all, who plays a violin free falling at 15,000 feet (albeit strapped to his instructor)?
And who does it naked, but for the harness?