Should classical concerts be shorter?

British pianist Stephen Hough thinks classical performances need a shake up to attract younger audiences.

Classical Concert
Audience at a concert at the Met. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

Hough is not convinced by the traditional length of a concert of around 2 or 3 hours with an interval in the middle. “I think we should consider removing the interval and starting either earlier or later than 7:30pm – 60 to 80 minutes of music, then out,” he suggested.

Hough also proposes that orchestra members should wear less formal dress.

On top of bringing in younger audiences, the altered format would enable two performances to be arranged in one evening, opening up new revenue possibilities, he continues.

What do you think? Are orchestras doing enough to reach new audiences?


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