Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Concerts are NOT expensive. Here are some figures.

There are people around who are convinced that because Glyndebourne and the ROH are awfully expensive if you sit in the stalls, this means that all classical music is impossibly expensive. This is not true.

Here are a few figures to prove the point: a few things you can do this Thursday, and how much you'd pay for them, top price and bottom price. Each event is a high-quality product representing the top notch of its genre.

Wigmore Hall, Michael Schade (tenor), Malcolm Martineau (piano). Lieder by Mozart, Schubert, Strauss and Brahms. Top price £35, bottom price £18.

Royal Festival Hall, Philharmonia Orchestra, Esa-Pekka Salonen conducts Sibelius: Top price £40, bottom price £9. (Premium seats available at £48.)

National Theatre, Olivier Theatre, Alan Ayckbourn's A Small Family Business. Top price £50, bottom price £15.

Regent's Park Open Air Theatre, Harold Brighouse's Hobson's Choice. Top price (premium) £55, bottom price £25.

Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships 2014. Thursday prices: Centre Court £62, No.1 Court £52, Nos 2 & 3 courts, £46.

Dolly Parton, O2 Arena. Top price £86, bottom price £64.

English National Opera, Bizet's The Pearl Fishers. Top price £99, bottom price £12.

Glyndebourne, Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier. Top price £250, bottom price (standing) £10.

You see, you can get into a world-class classical concert for less than pretty much anything other high-quality live performance. And even for opera at which the top price looks unconscionably high, the lower prices are far more payable than those at the O2.

Have a nice sunny Tuesday. I'm off to Longborough in the Cotsworlds to hear Lee Bisset sing Tosca.