What would a year in London be without a visit or two to the London Philharmonic Orchestra? As a student (even at the age of 30) you are able to take part in a fabulous scheme called NOISE that sponsor a handful of concerts per year with incredible bargain prices. Like I said how can you refuse or ignore the opportunity? This Wednesday, 24 September, I rented out a box for myself and three others at the Royal Festival Hall where we listened to Magnus Lindberg's Chorale, Prokofiev's Piano Concert No. 3, and Shostakovich's Symphony No. 3. And are you ready for the outrageous price? We paid £16 for a box for four of us!! Yes -- £16 thanks to the NOISE scheme for students. A bargain unrivalled.
The Royal Festival Hall is broken into two sides - blue and green. Our box was on the blue side and when there are pianists (as was the case on the 24th) - he or she will be seating facing the green side whereas the blue side will be able to see the actual instrument.
With the NOISE scheme, at specific concerts the students can purchase a ticket for ANY seat in the concert hall at £4 a piece and those who are students/under 26 can purchase best available at £8 a piece. It is an incredible value. It is especially fun to grab a group of your classmates and friends and rent out a couple boxes to share for an evening of great music, lovely companionship and good times. How can you say no to the value of culture and at that price?
The 24th was the opening of the season and there was a special Q&A (free) with the Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor Vladimir Jurowski and LPO's new Composer-in-Residence, Magnus Lindberg. Pre-concert performances and post-concert events are common and no tickets are required so do check the website or Facebook for further information about what is on offer for the evening you come out to see the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
Natasha, Yana, Pascaline and I thoroughly enjoyed the concert and the audience seemed to be just as enthralled as us to be sure if the amount of applause is any indication. We did find that the principal conductor, Vladimir Jurowski, was longwinded when giving his pre-concert explanation -- we wanted to hear the orchestra play. And when they played it was magical. The chosen programme for the evening showcased many different talented artists. There was also the lovely piano concerto by Prokoflev that was expertly played by the talented Jean-Efflam Bavouzet who wowed throughout both the orchestral piece and his encore number.
So if you are a student or under 26 sign up for the newsletter here on their website and get in the know for when the next NOISE concert will be happening. You can also message me on @Twitter and Facebook if you want more details. If you are not a student you will still be able to find excellent priced seats from £9-£65 throughout the concert hall and there is a great discount available if you book a series of concerts which you will want to do when you learn that the 2014-2015 is all about the amazing Rachmaninoff!
So grab those tickets and/or sign up for the newsletter and a toast to a season of fabulous music and amazing cultural opportunities right here in London!