Sunday, 22 April 2012

Overcoming the constraints of tradition

Igor Stravinsky whose Rite of Spring caused a riot on its première

There are certain rules about most music concerts, such as applauding solos by jazz artists or waving a lighter at stadium rock concerts. Classical music has its own customs and we work within these, while aiming to update some, without doing a ‘Stravinsky’.
Our main intention is to make classical music more open, with communication between composers, performers and audience. We have composers’ talks before each concert and encourage performers to talk about the works being performed. But, if you haven’t been to a concert like this before – what do you need to know?
We hope this helps:
Is there a dress code? 
No, not at all!
How long are the concerts? 
Concerts usually last about two hours.
Is there an interval? 
Yes, we have an interval, usually about 15/20 minutes long. That’s included in the two hour length of concert.
Will there be drinks/refreshments? 
We run a small bar offering wine and juice. As the Chapel is not licensed to sell alcohol, we ask for donations of £2 for a glass of wine and 50p for juice.
What do I need to know in advance? 
You don’t need to know anything but, if you are interested, there will be information about the featured composers and performers on the website plus some sound files to listen to. There will be a pre-concert talk by a featured composer who will invite questions. The concert programme has information on the composers and the pieces being performed. We also have a concert feedback form for your comments.
When should I applaud? 
If you enjoy what you hear, the usual ‘rule’ is to applaud at the end of a piece. Some pieces have more than a single section – these are indicated in the concert programme. If you’re not sure, wait until a couple of other people have started and join in.
Anything else? 
We look forward to hearing from you. What is your experience of attending a classical music concert? Leave us a comment below. You can also get in touch with us on Twitter, our user id is @LateMusicUK

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