and enjoy the Danville Symphony Orchestra
as we strive to achieve
our Mission of:
quality live musical performances of classical and other
worthy repertoire through symphony concerts and by partnering with
other performers and performing arts organizations,
an opportunity for dedicated, talented musicians throughout
the region to express and advance their talents, and
an economic development benefit to the Dan River region by
improving the quality of life for our citizens and those looking to
relocate to the region.
been to an orchestra concert before. What should I expect?
Expect to enjoy yourself! This is the time to let go of any
preconceptions you may have about classical music or the concert
experience. If you feel a little nervous, that's okay. Some things
about the concert may seem strange because they're new to you, but if
you just focus on the music you'll have a great time.
Open yourself up to the music. Let it trigger your emotions, maybe even
your memories. Feel the rhythms; follow the tunes. Watch the musicians
and the conductor, and see how they interact with each other. Notice
how the music ebbs and flows, surging and powerful at some times,
delicate and ephemeral at others, and everything in between.
What if I
don't know anything about classical music? Do I need to study
There's no need to study. The music will speak for itself. Just come
and enjoy! Over time, many frequent concertgoers do find their
enjoyment is deeper if they prepare for a concert. This can be simple,
like reading the program notes beforehand; or it can be more involved,
like listening to recordings of the music to be performed in the days
before they attend a concert. But if studying isn't your thing, there's
no need to be concerned about it.
recognize any of the music?
You might. Classical music is all around us: in commercials, movies
soundtracks, television themes, cartoons, retail shops and even some
elevators! Popular music often quotes classical melodies, too.
What should I
There is no dress code! Anything that makes you feel comfortable is
fine. Most people will be wearing business clothes or slightly dressy
casual clothes, but you'll see everything from khakis to cocktail
Absolutely! Plan to arrive before concert time, so you can find your
seat, turn off your cell phone, take a look at your surroundings,
absorb the atmosphere, and have time to glance through the program
book, too. You won't be alone. Most concertgoers make a point of coming
early to read the program notes, or just watch the orchestra warm up.
If you are late, there are guidelines:
Open the door and enter when
you hear applause - as no one is performing at that time.
When you do
come in, quickly pick a seat in the back.
The all-time greatest times to leave a hall: intermission and at the
end. If you must leave, except in the case of emergency, wait for the
Best choice - during applause
Good choice - in between pieces.
How long will
the concert be?
It varies, but most orchestra concerts are about 90 minutes to two
hours long, with an intermission at the halfway point. It's a good idea
to take a look at the program before the concert to get an idea of what
When should I
This is the number one question! No one wants to clap/applaud in the “wrong”
place. But it's simpler than you may think, and quite logical on the
At the beginning of the concert, the concertmaster will come onstage.
The audience claps as a welcome, and as a sign of appreciation to all
the musicians. After the orchestra tunes, the conductor (and possibly a
soloist) will come onstage. Everyone claps to welcome them, too. Then
everything settles down and the music begins. Just listen and enjoy!
The audience doesn't usually applaud again until the end of the piece.
In most classical concerts- unlike jazz or pop- the audience never
applauds during the music. They wait until the end of each piece, then
let loose with their applause. But this can be a little tricky, because
many pieces seem to end several times- in other words, they have
several parts, or “movements.” These are listed in your program.
What if you lose track, and aren't sure whether the piece is truly
over? One clue is to watch the conductor. He will turn and bow at the
end of the piece.
More extroverted audience members offten shout “Bravo!” (for a male
performer) and “Brava!” (for a female performer) when singers or
musicians take their individual bows, or “Bravi!” for the whole
Any food or
The concert hall is not the place for food, drinks, candies, lozenges,
etc. Wrappers are very distracting to both the performers and the
audience. If you have cough drops, unwrap a lozenge or two before the
music starts or during applause.
Also please avoid talking. Whispering is especially audible in a music
hall that is designed to pick up every sound. Enjoy the music - talk