Why are BBC Philharmonic encouraging smartphone use at their classical concerts?

They've decided to shun tradition and enhance music lovers' enjoyment throughout their performances.

By Ben Brown | Last updated 16 May 2019

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The orchestra has been busy working with the BBC’s tech teams to bring a new service for smart phones which is set to transform the way people enjoy concerts.

They’ve developed a brand-spanking new web app called Notes which sends information to smart phones during the orchestra’s performance and gives insights into what is being played at that exact moment on stage.

A dedicated team of music lovers will send through information, updates and interesting titbits in real-time, giving audience members a whole new dimension to the experience.

Probably coming as a relief to a few of the more ‘traditional’ concert goers, Notes users will be seated in a particular area of the Hall where their use of mobile phones will not disturb other people.

To make sure that plenty of people get a chance to experience this amazing new concept, we are offering Finest readers EXCLUSIVE £5 TICKETS for the opening performance of the BBC Philharmonic season in September.

Buy £5 Tickets

Enter promo code FINEST in the top right box before selecting your seats

BBC Philharmonic Director Simon Webb believes Notes will open up the enjoyment of the music to everyone.

“We can’t wait for audiences to start getting even more out of our music than they did before.  We know other orchestras have trialled similar services, but we are the first to introduce this into every single main season concert, putting it front and centre stage.

“It’s a vital step in our mission to cater to all music lovers, so we are keeping new audiences in mind as well as the experienced concert goer.”

He adds there are plans to share the technology in future: “Once we have thoroughly road tested it we are hoping we can share it with partners and other music organisations in the city.”

Feedback from audiences who have tested Notes has been positive. They like the tweet-length notes. Comments have included: “I really enjoyed Notes, I found it enhanced my concert experience and discovered things I wouldn’t know otherwise” and “Really engaging, interesting and very well done.”

From September, Notes will be available at all concerts in the BBC Philharmonic’s main Bridgewater Hall season. Exclusive £5 tickets are now on sale for the opening performance on Saturday 21st September.


with new BBC Philharmonic Notes Web App

Venue: Bridgewater Hall
Date: From Saturday 21st September
Exclusive ticket offer: £5 Notes tickets (including booking fee).
Enter promo code FINEST in the top right box before selecting your seats

Buy £5 Tickets

Book before Wednesday 31 August to enjoy this discount. Offer applies to 21 September concert. Valid for online bookings only.