An historic concert hall in the heart of Marylebone, Wigmore Hall is the home of live chamber music and solo performances in London. With just a short 10 minute journey between Wigmore Hall and The Portman, the downstairs bar of The Portman is an excellent meeting place for pre-performance drinks, as well as post-performance gatherings and parties.
About Wigmore Hall
Originally named the Bechstein Hall, after the famous Bechstein piano company who commissioned the building’s construction, the hall first opened its doors as a dedicated concert hall in 1901. By 1917 it had changed hands to become Wigmore Hall and has grown since to enjoy a fine reputation as one of the premier venues across London for chamber music and solo performances.
Over 400 events are presented in a season by Wigmore Hall, across a whole calendar year, including a weekly concert which is not only enjoyed by the hall’s audience, but world-wide as part of BBC Radio 3’s Lunchtime Concert programme.
What You’ll Find
The range of live music offered by Wigmore Hall is music to anyone’s ears! Genres performed range from early music and classical song to chamber music and jazz strands. This range includes exciting variations of musical and song performances, soloists, soprano and piano duets as well as group and orchestral performances.
Each season’s schedule is offered as a full brochure of performance information available to download from Wigmore Hall’s website. The 2014 Summer season includes performances by Colin Currie, the Joshua Redman Jazz Series and the Rachmaninov Song Series, to name but a few.
Popular too are Wigmore Hall’s Lecture-Recitals, with acclaimed musicians both performing and explaining the works of famous composers. A recent lecture-recital event included acclaimed concert pianist and pedagogue, Andras Schiff, who gave audiences the chance to learn about Beethoven’s piano concertos as well as enjoy his stunning renditions of these fine compositions.
The performance hall itself is a unique and intimate venue, to which considerable thought to acoustics was given during its construction. As a result, this rectangular hall, with a Renaissance-style décor featuring alabaster and marble, achieves remarkably clear acoustics, particularly in comparison to domed concert halls and theatres.
Wigmore Hall enjoyed a complete refurbishment in 2004, including considerable restoration and upgrading of facilities such as new seats and air conditioning. Significant attention was paid to the hall’s stunning original features, many of which have been fully and sympathetically restored to their former glory. The cupola above the stage, originally executed by sculptor Frank Lynn Jenkins, is a fine example of this careful restoration of the hall’s original artwork.
Refreshments are available from Wigmore Hall’s bar or restaurant, both of which may be hired for private functions. There are also rehearsal rooms with recording facilities and meeting rooms available for hire.
Box Office Opening Hours
The box office is open 7 days a week from 10 am to 8.30 pm (if there is an evening performance).
On days where there is no evening performance, the box office closes at 5.00 pm.
Although you might assume that Wigmore Hall might be an evening venue, it’s worth noting that many of their lunchtime and matinee performances are extremely popular.
Other audience favourites at Wigmore Hall include their Sunday morning performances, which are regularly attended by both London music lovers and visitors to London. It’s certainly worth checking the schedule of performances and booking in advance if you wish to attend because these special Sunday recitals become booked up very quickly. The ticket price includes coffee or sherry afterwards, after which it’s lovely to continue your relaxed Sunday with an after-performance walk to The Portman for lunch.
The Wigmore Hall website has a dedicated ‘What’s On’ page, which offers a full schedule of upcoming events, with easy links to their online booking system.
Ticket prices vary across the many different performance types and scheduled times. Full details of pricing for each event can be found within the schedule of events as listed on the Wigmore Hall website.
General consensus amongst visitors to Wigmore Hall is that considering this prestigious venue and the excellent musical events and performers it attracts, ticket prices offer excellent value.
Wigmore Hall is very easy to reach you seeing the London Underground and Bond Street tube station, which can be accessed via the Central (red) and Jubilee (grade) lines. Exit the station onto Oxford Street, turning West, and take an immediate right onto St Christopher’s Place. Follow the road all the way to the end where you will reach Wigmore Street; turn right and follow the road until you see Wigmore Hall appear on your left hand side.
In less than a quarter of an hour you can make your way on foot from Wigmore Hall to The Portman, where you will be able to enjoy a range of refreshing beverages and fine dining options.
To reach The Portman simply exit Wigmore Hall, heading West along Wigmore Street you’ll pass Portman Square on your right hand side after which you’ll want to take a right alongside the square on Gloucester Place. Take the next left you encounter onto Upper Berkely Street and follow the road until you see The Portman to your left on the corner with Seymour Place.