Greek-born musician Yanni--of the New Agey, swelling-synthesizers sound--played the 2,000-year old Herod Atticus theater atop the Acropolis in the capital of Greece back in September 1993, and nobody pelted him with olives. In fact, he came away with a platinum album and a PBS special.
Now, he plans to play the Taj Mahal, the gorgeous white-marble mausoleum built by Shah Jhan in the 1600s for his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The gig is Thursday and Friday and a crowd of 22,000 is expected.
Many Indians aren't happy. There are the farmers who say their crops were destroyed to build a stage for the concert. They threaten to burn themselves during the concert (then again, other Indian farmers along with feminists threatened to self-immolate to protest the Miss World pageant in Bangalore last November but didn't).
Prominent social activists and environmentalists filed petitions to the Supreme Court arguing that the sound, light and fuel emissions could damage the structure, which is already crumbling and yellowing from pollution.
Yanni's management company argued back that it will use a lighting system and audio equipment that point away from the monument. The stage will be set up in front of the Taj.
On Monday, the court agreed with Yanni that the concert would not endanger the monument. He'll have to meet one requirement, though: keeping the volume down to 40 decibels.