Alaska band Portgual. The Man performed a concert Monday evening at the National Zoo as part of the institution’s Endangered Song Project—-a campaign intended to bring awareness to the plight of endangered species, particularly the Sumatran Tiger.
But things turned less than charitable when a man with a Justin Bieber haircut standing at the front of the lawn concert refused to sit down after National Zoological Park Police asked him to do so. The man then resisted as police tried to forcibly remove him from the concert. The altercation lasted for at least 90 seconds, directly in front of the stage. All the while, a small crowd formed around the cops and the man, with concertgoers trying to capture the incident on their phones. Members of the band even tried to diffuse the situation, seemingly with no luck.
After the concert, Portugal. The Man tweeted apologies to fans.
A National Zoo spokeswoman would not say whether the man was arrested, adding that a press release would be sent later today.
As part of the Endangered Song Project, described as “an analog-meets-digital awareness campaign,” Portugal. The Man released a song called “Sumatran Tigers.” The band released only 400 copies of the single, a nod to the fact that there are currently 400 Sumatran tigers left in the wild. The polycarbonate records were designed to degrade after a certain amount of plays. Because there were only 400 copies, the band asked the holders of the song to digitize it and share it on social media because, according to the National Zoo, “breeding the song socially will help save it from extinction.”
Photos courtesy Jonny Grave