What to Expect at a Classical Series Concert
A guide to help maximize your enjoyment.
Classical Series at the Long Beach Terrace Theater.
Parking at the Convention Center is $20 per vehicle. The Center’s parking attendants direct patrons to the best available parking space. If applicable, state if handicapped parking is needed to the first available attendant
Planning Your Evening
What to wear? Many guests wear business clothes or slightly dressy casual clothes, but you’ll see everything from khakis with a nice shirt to dresses and suits. Although you won’t be turned away, you may be more comfortable dressing up a little. It’s a grand affair and a who’s who around town, so go ahead and dress up for a nice night on the town. Strong perfumes can be uncomfortable to those around you and are discouraged.
All ages are welcome, but experience tells us that the setting and length of the event may not be conducive to enjoyment with small children. Please use your judgment for yourself and others. We don’t recommend Classical concerts for children under eight years old.
If you arrive late, you might have to wait until a piece is finished so you may be seated without disturbing others. Please allow plenty of time for arrival and parking.
Pre-Concert Talks are a great way to start off the concert experience. They are presented one hour prior to the concert start time in the Theater and feature guest conductors and/or local musicologists discussing the composers and their works. These talks provide insight that enhances one’s enjoyment of the music.
Experience the evening
As you arrive in the Plaza, enjoy the dancing fountains and firepits. The Long Beach Symphony also provides live music in the lobby before the concert, featuring young local virtuosos. The music starts when the doors open, so come early and have some social time.
Some people like to park downtown and have an early dinner, walk over to the theater for the Pre-Concert Talk one hour prior to the concert, then chat with friends in the theater lobby or or purchase drink at the lobby bar in preparation for the concert. A concession counter is available for the purchase of small snacks.
Purchase a spirit in the lobby and enjoy it in the concert hall with the great music. Sip & Enjoy! There are concessions (snacks, coffee, and full bar) in the lobby, available before the concert and during intermission. You may also order drinks ahead of time so they will be ready for pick-up
Ahead of time, you might want to read the program notes available online on the concert page, which will compliment the Pre-Concert Talk by providing additional insight into the artists, the composers, and their music.
Before the music starts, settle into your seat and make sure your phones and other electronics are in silent mode. If you will require a candy, you might want to have it unwrapped and ready in order not to disturb others around you. Prepare yourself for a wonderful opportunity to simply “be” with the music.
During the Concert
A classical music concert provides you with an opportunity to experience the lush sounds of the orchestra as they wash over you in an acoustically superior environment. There is little that compares to being one with your fellow music lovers enjoying a transcendental experience together in silence, leading to the eventual jubilation at the triumphant finish. Thus, it is an important part of the experience to remain silent and somewhat still during the performance. If for any reason you must leave your seat, please do so in between selections—preferably when the audience is applauding. This is especially important at the Terrace Theater because we have no center aisle.
There is usually one 20-minute intermission and the concerts are over by 10pm.
Applause: Generally, the best rule of thumb is “don’t be the first one to clap.” Usually, long symphonies are divided into distinct “movements,” and the conductor will keep his hands raised during the silence between movements so the audience knows that the piece is not yet over. At the end of the piece, the conductor will slowly lower their hands and the audience will then recognize the musicians for their performance.
Still have questions? Call our box office at (562) 436-3203