The day before his Tuesday evening concert to celebrate the Chinese New Year with Lang(x2) and the NYPhil, Shanghai-born conductor Long Yu sucker-punched a ruffian on Columbus Avenue.
In a telephone interview on Wednesday, Mr. Yu, 48, said he was walking with a friend after dinner on Columbus at about 70th Street around 10:30 p.m. on Monday when a man approached and asked for a cigarette. Mr. Yu said he did not want to be bothered and waved him off. The man suddenly swung a fist and struck him in the eye, Mr. Yu said, and started to run. The conductor said he chased the man, grabbed him and swung back.
Year of the Dragon, indeed.