How to get younger people into the concert hall?

Posted on: October 21, 2010

In Wednesday’s (10/20) Evening Standard (London), Louise Jury writes, “Live classical music must change if it is to attract younger audiences, research reveals today. What is needed is a less formal concert atmosphere, chats about the music from the conductor and cheap ticket prices that include a free beer. A study was conducted of people aged 24 to 36 as they attended concerts by the London Symphony Orchestra, the London Chamber Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in one of its Night Shift performances at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. The feedback shows how alienated young people feel by traditional concerts and how they blame their own lack of knowledge when they fail to enjoy the music. The exception was the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment which has created its rules-free concerts, the Night Shift, complete with student tickets that cover the price of a beer. Concerts are introduced by the conductor to put the music in context and audiences are encouraged to applaud when they like instead of following the convention of not clapping between movements. … William Norris, of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, said its Night Shift audience was four-fifths under-35 and a third students.”

Posted October 21, 2010