Nevermind the "Showtime!" kids who can and will kick you in the face with their pole-swinging. The NYPD apparently decided that a classically trained violinist was worthy of arrest for disturbing the peace with his shouting and screaming rendition of "Gigue," from the third partita for violin solo by Johann Sebastian Bach.

According to Matthew Christian, an English teacher who spends his summers performing violin pieces around the city's subways, the trouble started almost the moment he walked into the 68th Street-Hunter College station just after noon on Thursday. No sooner had he reached the platform and began to unpack his things, he said, when an officer standing on the opposite platform shined his flashlight at Christian: "Not today," he said.

Christian said he proceeded with his mission, and the officer made his way over, and told him he was not allowed to play without a permit. Christian, an ardent advocate of buskers' rights, said he was familiar with the rules and that there is no permitting system, only a performance scheduling system. According to Christian, the officer then said that if he didn't quit it, he'd be arrested. Christian kept playing.

While waiting for the arresting officers to arrive, Christian spoke with the station manager, who said she was "overruled" by the NYPD. In the meantime:

I went back downstairs to meet my fate, and shortly afterward, two more officers arrived, one in a blue shirt and one white-shirt. They conferred with Officer Kennedy, then left without talking to me. After that, I waited for a possible arrest on my platform, and Officer Kennedy waited across the tracks without saying a word.

After some more waiting, Christian began to play, again, on which the officer promptly put the kibosh. Here's video of that:

The officer continued to insist that Christian procure a permit, and Christian continued to insist that no such permit exists. After trying to convince him to leave the station voluntarily, the officer again called his superiors. Christian pointed out specifically, in the rule book, where it says that he's allowed to play.

Strangely, his curiosity about the law seemed to evaporate when he had the chance to have a copy of the rules in his hands. He changed to a new tactic, telling me that the rules could be “overruled” in the case of a safety problem.

Here's video of the officer explaining the Great Violin Safety Hazard of 2013:

Finally, Christian said, the original officer returned with the following explanation: “He asked you to stop playing and you would not stop.” From there, Christian was ordered to put his hands behind his back and step against the wall. He was held for four hours and given a desk appearance ticket, then released.

Maybe rather than go through all that hassle, the cops should have just brought this lady in.