If you are reading this page, we hope that means you’ll be joining us for a concert soon! Whether you are newer to classical music or it’s your first orchestra concert – we want you to have a great experience every time.
Where do you perform?
The Annapolis Symphony is a resident company at Maryland Hall. We perform in the concert hall.
What’s a good seat?
We get asked this a lot. Most people will tell you that Maryland Hall is a fairly intimate venue. With only about 670 seats, compared to typical concert halls that are double or even triple the size, there is really no bad seat in the house. If there is a piano soloist performing, people like to sit towards the left side of the house so that you can see the pianist’s hands as they perform.
The rest is up to you. Whether you like to sit so close to stage so you feel like one of the performers, or prefer a grander view of the entire symphony, you can choose the seats that work for you!
What do I wear?
We want you to be comfortable when you join us for a concert, so dress in a way that works for you. Some people love dressing up and going out. If you prefer to dress more casually, you won’t be the only one. Being in what we fondly call America’s Sailing Capital, many patrons attend concerts in boating casual attire.
How can I study up before attend?
We work hard to make each concert a unique experience, meaning at the performance you will learn a little from your program book as well as from the Maestro as he sometimes briefly introduces the pieces from the stage. If you would like to study up before the concert, we have multiple ways to help you do that:
- The Meet the Masterworks pre-concert talk with Adult Programs Lecturer Dr. Rachel Franklin starts at 6:45 PM, is free to concert attendees and lasts approximately 40 minutes, so you have a half hour between the talk and concert to get a drink, use the restroom, mingle, etc. During the talk, Dr. Franklin covers topics such as information about the featured composers and their lives, what to listen for during the concert (accompanied by excerpts performed at the piano and from recordings), and insightful commentary about how the concert works relate to other pieces of orchestra music.
- Listen to the concert playlist on Spotify. Compiled by Maestro Novo himself, the playlists are full of his top picks and points out his favorite recordings of the pieces the orchestra will be performing.
- Explore the audio-enhanced Program Notes
How long is a concert?
Concerts can vary in length depending on how long each piece is on the program, but they are usually 2 hours (including a 20-minute intermission).
Where do I park?
Parking is free on the Maryland Hall campus. Maryland Hall can accommodate parking for most events. Overflow parking is located at Bates Middle School and within one block of Maryland Hall in residential areas. Please do not park in the two small parking lots adjacent to the town homes on Carraway Lane. The town homes enforce towing in those lots for non-resident cars.
When do I applaud?
This question can be considered controversial and the answer can change depending on who you ask. In the early days of classical music, the audience could very rowdy–talking, clapping, and even shouting during performances. At some (unknown) point during the 1900s, the audience changed and began to only applaud at the end of a piece and never between movements (in other words, clap at the end of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and stay silent during the short breaks between each of the four movements.)
The tricky part with this is for people who don’t know the unwritten rule about when to applaud. At every concert someone inevitably claps after the first movement, then feels weird because they’re the only one who missed the ‘secret’ memo, and get side-eye looks from those around them. We decided this can be awkward and uncomfortable and not true to the origins of classical music. Our policy is when you have an emotional reaction to the music or feel so moved you just have to express yourself, do it. If you love a particular movement and want to share your enthusiasm with the orchestra and your neighbors, go ahead and clap!
If you are passionate about your reaction you will probably invite other people to join you. But please, be respectful of the performers’ concentration and do not interrupt while they are still playing. Unlike in jazz or opera concerts, in symphony concerts people do not usually clap after a particularly spectacular solo if a piece, or one of its movements, is not over yet. You will have a chance to cheer that particular performer at the end of the piece when they get a solo bow at the Maestro’s suggestion.
It’s important to note that not every orchestra feels this way, so don’t take this policy as a guide when attending other symphony concerts. At the Annapolis Symphony, if you love what you hear, we love for you to show it.