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Frequently Asked Questions

We hope the following suggestions will help you become better acquainted and feel more comfortable with attending a Fort Wayne Philharmonic concert.

And, of course, we would love to answer any questions you may have about our performances. At a concert, feel free to ask any Phil staff member for help. See us at the Patron Services table located in the venue’s lobby.

What should I wear?
There is no official dress code for Phil concerts. We want you to feel comfortable and dress as you normally would for other types of events. The typical formality or informality of attire usually depends on the type of concert being attended.

For classical concerts, patrons’ attire usually ranges from dressy casual to business dress.

For pops concerts, patrons’ attire usually ranges from casual to dressy casual depending on the pops artist and selections to be performed.

When should I arrive?
Always arrive early or on time. If at all possible, it is best to arrive at least 10-15 minutes before the concert is scheduled to begin to allow plenty of time to be seated. Also, remember to allow adequate time for parking and traffic.

If you do arrive late, it is common courtesy to wait until the first piece is completed and then enter during the applause. Simply wait in the lobby until the first suitable break. When in doubt, feel free to ask an usher or other front-of-house staff for help.

This seating policy also holds true after intermission.

Common Courtesy
Turn off your cell phone ...

Always remember to turn off all electronic devices. Electronic devices include, but are not limited to, cellular phones, beepers/pagers, watches, organizers, and other devices with alarms. Please switch these devices to silent mode or turn them off.

… and leave your camera at home.

Please refrain from taking pictures during a performance. The click of the camera and flash is distracting to the musicians, conductor, and other patrons.

Electronic recording devices are strictly prohibited. No video cameras, tape recorders, or other video/audio recording devices are allowed.

What is the orchestra doing?
Once the orchestra is seated, the Concertmaster will take the stage to tune the orchestra. It is appropriate to applaud during this time. Once he or she enters, she or he will bow to the audience and indicate to the principal oboist to begin tuning.

Once the tuning is finished, the conductor will make his or her way to the podium. It is appropriate to applaud during this time. Once the applause has stopped and the conductor is ready, the concert will begin.

When do I applaud?
Applause is always appreciated, but there are some considerations for applauding at the appropriate time.

When there is more than one movement to a piece, it is generally appropriate to applaud at the completion of the entire piece. There may be brief pauses in between movements.

If no one is clapping, then the piece is likely not over. When in doubt, follow the other audience members on when to applaud. Also, pay attention to the number of movements listed in the program to have an idea when applause is suitable.

At the end of the concert, it is appropriate to clap, give a standing ovation, or call “Bravo” or “Brava.” This simply means “Well Done.” During this time, the soloist and conductor may leave the stage and return shortly thereafter. This is referred to as a curtain call. The length of a curtain call may vary depending on the amount of applause and enthusiasm of the audience.

If the applause and enthusiasm are overwhelming, the conductor may signal an encore.

Intermission times vary, but typically last anywhere from 15-20 minutes.

Learn more
To better understand the pieces to be performed, you can do some preliminary research if you wish. This research can be conducted in a variety of ways. The Internet is a great source of information, so one may start there for initial information. Part of your research may consist of listening to different performances and interpretations of the pieces to be performed. Being familiar with the pieces on the program will enhance your experience by allowing you to put pieces into historical context and appreciate the composer’s plot behind the piece.

Don't worry, though, if you are unable to conduct any research prior to a performance. Each program book includes notes on the pieces, composers, and guest artists. Concert programs are free to all ticket  holders and are available from the ushers.

Some performances may include a pre-concert presentation/concert preview to help you learn more about the pieces on the program. Contact the Education Department at 260.481.0770 for more information.