Unspectacular results from the BBC Proms

Unspectacular results from the BBC Proms


norman lebrecht

September 13, 2015

The audience figures are out and they are uninspiring.

Last year, for the first time since 2009, box-office dipped below 90 percent, achieving just 88%.

This year it rose marginally to 89 percent, still below the benchmark of a successful season.

In 2011, it reached 94%.

On the positive side, the BBC reports that more than 37,500 people were first-timers, 14,500 of them attending a Sunday Matinee or Late Night concert. Over 8,600 under-18s bought tickets across the season.

Prom 45, BBC Proms 2012

photo: Chris Christodoulou/Lebrecht Music&Arts


  • Erich says:

    No wonder with a programme which reached it’s lowest common denominator in the second half with that quite appalling Sound of Music medlee with that second rate warbler ( and let’s also please quickly forget “I bought me a cat.”Thank God for Grosvenor and Kaufmann. Quite honestly, la Alsop is also no genius. The Strauss was a one-dimensional walk-through and she’s an efficient time-beater but not very much more, although her speech was good. All in all though, not a vintage evening.

  • pooroperaman says:

    In other news, the promenaders’ charity collection smashed all previous records, weighing in just below £112,000.

    Which suggests that audiences are actually rather healthy.

  • Max Grimm says:

    Norman, do you know how many people total attended this year’s Proms?

    • pooroperaman says:

      Far more than he would have liked.

      • Max Grimm says:

        His likes/dislikes notwithstanding, they unfortunately do nothing to put the numbers he lists into perspective.

        • pooroperaman says:

          OK, well, capacity of the RAH is c.6000 and there were 76 Proms this year. That makes 100% attendance 456,000, and so 89% is presumably therefore 405,840 (although you would have to add the 12 Proms at Cadogan Hall, for which I don’t have the statistics).

          If classical music really is dying, that seems like an awful lot of mourners.

  • Emil says:

    “Classical music is dying, and I, Slipped Disc, will make sure I am the first to bury the coffin.”