A concert is usually an organized musical or dance show put up for a live audience. Concerts could have singers, instrumentalists and other musicians performing solo or as groups. It could feature budding or popular artists; the scope and budget of the concert would vary accordingly. Concerts can be held in any place with sufficient room and infrastructure: stadiums, parks, private houses, school or college playgrounds, night clubs or bars, amphitheaters, and convention centers. The actual space needed would depend on the concert’s scope and budget. Generally, the bigger artists perform in stadiums or large parks.  

A rock concert. Image credit: Flickr
A rock concert. Image credit: Flickr

Concert Plan and Promotion

Staging a concert entails a lot of work, which is handled by a dedicated team hired by the artist(s). The individual or group who arranges concerts is called a concert or tour promoter. The promoter is responsible for booking the concert venue, planning and executing the ticketing setup, getting the local press on-board, marketing (such as printing posters and running ads), keeping a check on the concert’s technicalities and logistics, etc. In other words, a tour promoter ensures everything needed to execute the show smoothly is up and running. A concert promoter usually charges the performer a flat rate per show or takes home a share of the ticket sales.   

The Experience

Watching favorite artists perform live on stage is much more exciting than seeing their performance on television. Or, in other words, listening to live music is far more superior than listening to prerecorded tracks. Concerts therefore sell and are still relevant even in this fast-paced Internet world of iTunes and online music. Invariably, an individual heads back home from a concert energized and refreshed.

Concert crowd. Image credit: Flickr
Concert crowd. Image credit: Flickr

However, it’s not always about the music, particularly in case of more lively concerts such as rock concerts. Such concerts are more about the experience, with people shouting and dancing to the tunes of the performer. The noise levels are huge – in fact, listening to the actual performance becomes extremely hard. These concerts are not to every music fan’s liking and those who prefer quality listening can buy tickets to a classical concert (such as chamber music and symphony orchestra).     

Generally, the bigger concerts where famous singers or musicians perform can attract huge, jam-packed crowds. There could be people drinking beers and other types of alcohol, and some even behaving inappropriately. But such raucous behavior is not the norm and restricted to specific concert types. People attending these concerts are usually aware of such annoyances, and are willing to overlook them.

Concert Types

Concerts could be of multiple types, depending on the performer or number of performers, genre of music, musical instruments, and other related factors.

Chamber Music

Chamber music. Image credit: Flickr
Chamber music. Image credit: Flickr

A chamber music performance comprises a small musicians group sans a conductor. Violins, piano, and cello are the instruments typically used in such concerts. Chamber music shows may also present percussion or vocal groups.

Chamber Orchestra

Chamber orchestra. Image credit: Flickr
Chamber orchestra. Image credit: Flickr

The orchestra is a small group comprising 10 to 40 players and a conductor. The actual group size may change according to the music genre. Different instruments could be part of the show; however, some orchestras restrict themselves to string instruments.

Symphony Orchestra

Symphony orchestra. Image credit: Flickr
Symphony orchestra. Image credit: Flickr

Also called philharmonic orchestra, a symphony orchestra is much bigger than chamber orchestra, comprising at least 80 players. There’s also a conductor, and a chorus and guest singer joining the party at times. Generally, a range of instruments could be seen in action in such orchestras – including strings, brasses, woodwinds, piano, percussion, etc.

Choral Music

Choral music. Image credit: Flickr
Choral music. Image credit: Flickr

Choral music can entail diverse performances: only vocals (no music instrument or just a piano), or vocals accompanied by a big orchestra or small group of musicians. The choir group could have three to four members or more than 100.

Opera and Dance

Opera and dance concert. Image credit: Flickr
Opera and dance concert. Image credit: Flickr

These concerts embed theatrical and visual elements into their music played by a full-fledged orchestra or a smaller group of musicians. However, not all the music played is live – some of the bits could be prerecorded.

Recital

Recital. Image credit: Flickr
Recital. Image credit: Flickr

A recital is basically a platform for an artist (vocalist or instrumentalist) to showcase his/her talent. The artist is often accompanied by a pianist. At times, a recital could comprise a duo or group of performers.

Children/Family Concert

Children/family concert. Image credit: Flickr
Children/family concert. Image credit: Flickr

These concerts are for the kids and family. Invariably, the performers are children themselves, supervised or guided on stage by adults. The concert unlike most other concerts happen during the day, and are much shorter in duration.

House Concert

House concert. Image credit: Flickr
House concert. Image credit: Flickr

These are private concerts not open to the general public. Typically, the house owner or member of the house is the performer, and his/her friends or family members the audience. Also, organizations could have concerts arranged in private spaces to raise funds or thank supporters and donors.