Manchester UK



Manchester Classical Music & Opera

Including Choirs, Venues and Orchestras in
Greater Manchester & the NorthWest

The Bridgewater Hall

Bridgewater HallBridgewater Concert Hall

Lower Mosley Street, Manchester M2.
Tel: 0161-950 0000. Box Office: 0161-907 9000.
This recently completed international concert hall is one of the city’s
most important civic buildings, and a key element in the regeneration
of Manchester as it faces the millennium. It was designed by Renton
Howard Wood Levin in 1996, and is now one of the most acoustically
superior classical music venues in the world. Its impressive auditorium
seats 2,400 people, and is a world class venue for visiting international
orchestras and will host regular performances by the city’s
Philharmonic Orchestra,
the Manchester
and other leading music ensembles. The auditorium is
designed to be warm and dynamic with acoustics carefully designed
to produce high quality sound reproduction, whether it be of a full
symphony orchestra or the clarity of a single solo instrument.
The whole building is mounted on a system of 270 giant foundation
“springs” which isolate it from vibration and resultant noise so that
concert-goers can appreciate musical performance without interference
from passing traffic. Beneath seating run channels for the invisible
air conditioning system, so that comfortable temperatures can be maintained
whatever the weather outside.
Part of the nearby Rochdale Canal has been connected to the purpose-built
basin, so that visitors can look down on the brightly coloured barges
which moor there. The building complex was designed by the Renton
Howard Wood Levin Partnership, specialists in concert hall design,
and was built by the Laing Construction Company. Inside there are
foyers on four different levels linked by an impressive staircase.
These foyers contain refreshment bars.
The whole concept of the concert hall is one of tradition and renaissance
: it is designed to nurture the musical excellence which already resides
within the city, and to bring it a fresh vitality which a fine building
such as this might inspire.

The Manchester Evening News Arena

M.E.N. Arena, Manchester

Victoria Station, Hunts Bank, Manchester
24 Hour Ticket Hotline: Tel: 0161-930 8000.
Completed in 1995, the Manchester Arena is a major venue for all kinds
of performances, including classical recitals and concerts, pop and
rock bands, as well as hosting sporting events. It was the home base
for the now defunct Manchester Storm Ice Hockey Team and the Manchester
Giants Basketball Team.
Concerts are periodic – telephone for programme of forthcoming events.
Storm and Giants games tend to take place on Saturday and Sunday throughout
the winter season.
The 19,500 seater arena has full facilities, bars, refreshments and
concessions stalls. Advance booking office, dedicated car parking
and direct access to Victoria Rail Station for InterCity and local
Metrolink connections. One of Manchester’s newest performance venues,
Nynex is built on the site of the old Exchange Station. It has, within
its first few years, attracted major artists such as the Three Tenors
(Placido Domingo, Jos� Careras and Luciano Pavarotti), popular singers
like Celine Dion, Simply Red, Barry Manilow and Eric Clapton.

The Opera House Manchester

Opera House, ManchesterOpera house, manchester

Quay Street, Manchester
Parties and Groups of 10 or more: Tel: 0161-245 6666.
One of Manchester’s biggest venues for large theatrical productions,
opera, dance and modern West End musicals. This is a very elegant
old building, seating 2000. Disabled facilities.
Initially it was named the ‘New Theatre’ when it opened on Boxing
Day in 1912, and after 5 years being known as the ‘New Queens’, it
took on its present title in the 1930s under new ownership. It was
always a celebrated theatre. In its time, its shows featured such
great actors as Sir John Geilgud, Peter Ustinov, Vivienne Leigh and
Sir Alec Guinness.
It has hosted such shows as “Oklahoma!”, “Kiss Me Kate”, “South
Pacific” , and “My Fair Lady” , as well as Gilbert & Sullivan
operettas, and in more recent times Andrew Lloyd Webber’s record-breaking
musical “Phantom of the Opera”. Suffering a similar fate to many theatres
and cinemas, its audiences declined in the 1970s, preferring to stay
at home to watch television. It was closed in 1979.
Fortunately, a renaissance in interest and a great deal of petitioning
to save the Palace Theatre from a similar fate resulted in the Arts
Council stepping in and the Opera House being saved and reopened.
Now, thanks to a lively and commercial business approach, it is a
most successful theatre.

The Hall� Orchestra

Charles Hallé
Sir Charles Hallé

Box Office Bookings Tel: 0161-907 9000
Hallé Concerts Society Tel: 0161-237 7000
The world renowned Hall� Orchestra, whose home is Manchester, is the
oldest professional orchestra in Britain. Founded by
, played for many years in the Free Trade Hall, (now the
Radisson Edwardian Hotal), before moving to the new purpose-built
International Concert Hall, the Bridgewater
, nearby GMEX Centre in
1996, under the new musical direction of Kent Nagano. Their performing
season is from October through to May, and always includes a wide
variety of Classical and orchestral pieces, as well as hosting many
international soloists and celebrities. Numerous recordings available.
About half of their performances are in Manchester, but they have
a full travelling international diary too. The orchestra has a large
and long recording history, and most popular classical pieces are
available as Hallé Orchestra recordings. Widely involved in
educational initiatives. Proms series in June and July, regular Thursday
concerts from September to May, Opus One Series of well-known classical
favourites on other days, and Hallé Pops designed to introduce
newcomers to the joys of classical music.

The Royal Northern College of Music

Royal Northern College of MusicRNCM, Manchester

124 Oxford Road, Manchester M13. Tel: 0161-907 5278

The prestigious Royal Northern College of Music attracts musical prodigies
from all over Britain and the world, and puts many an aspiring young
musician into the forefront of musical performance. It presents regular
classical music concerts to the public, with a full programme, ranging
from solo performances and chamber ensembles to full orchestral and
choral works, staged most nights of the week. Spring operas with acclaimed
performances by students. Performances are from student groups based
at the college and visiting companies. Phone for current programme.
Its growing international reputation has grown over the years, particularly
in its vocal department, which has produced singers like Jane Eaglen
and Amanda Roocroft.

The BBCPhilharmonic Orchestra

BBC Philharmonic Orchestra

The celebrated northern BBC Orchestra, with its
principal conductor, Yan Pascal Tortelier, which contributes significantly
to the regional, national and international musical performance scene.
From September 1996 their main performance venue will be the Bridgewater
Hall. Many Radio 3 performances at the BBC Oxford Road Building, and
CD music to their credit. Their Professional Access Scheme allows
visiting musicians and students to experience playing with the orchestra.
Frequent Family Concerts designed for younger audiences.

The Manchester Camerata

Manchester Camerata

For information and tickets Tel: 0161-225 8357.
Since its foundation in 1972, the Manchester Camerata has become well
established as part of the city’s and the nation’s musical life. It
is now ranked among the finest professional orchestras of its kind
in the UK. It performs over 100 concerts a year – most in the northwest
– but many abroad. Its new home is the Bridgewater Concert Hall. It
can vary from as few as 10 players to 80, depending on the nature
of the music being played. Sachio Fujioka was appointed its principal
conductor in the 1995-96 season. The Manchester Camerata has been
hailed by the press as “one of the country’s sleekest and most polished
ensembles”, and “stylishly elegant playing from the whole ensemble”.
Many recent international tours, including Japan, France, Germany
and Hong Kong. Involved in many musical and educational initiatives,
including the “Young Musician of the Year” competition for
Cheshire schools, and the “Big Bridgewater Challenge”.

The Barnby Choir

Photo courtesy of the Barnby Choir

A local choir begun at Manchester Cathedral in 1945,
now based in Wilmslow. Their website contains a great deal of information
for would-be singing enthusiasts, as well as a history of the choir,
events and membership details.
Contact: Margaret Fletcher – Publicity Secretary. Tel: 0161-439 8184.

University of Manchester Music Department

Martin Harris Centre for Music & Drama, University of Manchester

Now housed in a purpose-built arts centre, The Martin
Harris Centre for Music and Drama, which includes the Cosmo Rodewald
Concert Hall and the John Thaw Studio Theatre.
Offers a regular season of music concerts, theatrical productions
and other other events including a Creative Writing Reading Series.

More information on their website at:

Manchester Chamber Concerts Society

Manchester Chamber Concerts Society promotes a
series of seven chamber music concerts each year at the Royal Northern
College of Music in Manchester. The emphasis is on presenting leading
international musicians as well as highly talented younger players.
Programming is particularly important; we seek out artists who are
willing to include the greatest music written for small ensembles
from the eighteenth century to the present day. For listings and booking
information, see: Website: Email:

The Cheshire Chord Company

The Cheshire Chord Company

Rehearsals at: The High School, Oughtrington Lane,
Lymm, Cheshire. Website:
. Ladies Barbershop Chorus with 78 members from all over the North
West. UK and International medallists, Sainsbury Choir of the Year
finalists. Available for booking via the website.

Other Opera Venues around Greater Manchester

The Buxton Opera House
Water Street, Buxton, Derbyshire. Tel: 01298-72190.
Various concerts and chamber ensembles as well as opera and dramatic

Queen Elizabeth Hall
West Street, Oldham. Tel: 0161-911 4072.

Queen Elizabeth Hall, Oldham
Queen Elizabeth Hall, Oldham

Civit Hills Open Theatre
Civit Hills Farm, Sutton, Macclesfield. Tel: 01260-252322. During
the summer months.

Coliseum Theatre
Fairbottom Street, Oldham. Tel: 0161-624 2829.

GMEX Manchester
Lower Mosley Street, Manchester. Tel: 0161-832 9000 (Box office).
0161-834 2700 (Enquiries).

Other Classical Music Ensembles & Opera
Venues in the North of England

Alpha-Numerically Listed:

4tune String Quartet
Cheadle, Cheshire. Tel 07812 952 006
Professional string quartet for weddings, corporate events, private
functions etc. Website: Email:

Buxton Opera House

Water Street, Buxton, Derbyshire. Tel: 01298-72190.
Various concerts and chamber ensembles as well as opera and dramatic

Carlton Ensemble

45 High Grove, Cheadle. Tel: 0161-428 4765.
Classical, light, string quartet & flute. For hire at all events.

Chetham’s School of

Long Millgate, Manchester. Tel: 0161-834 9644.
Free lunchtime concerts every weekday from about 1.30pm-2.30pm. The
Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Choir give perform
in Britain and all over the world.
See main entry –
Chethams School of

Dunham Massey Hall
Dunham Road, Altrincham, Cheshire. Tel: 0161-928 9146.

Macclesfield Oriana

c/o 10 Hazlemere Avenue, Macclesfield, Cheshire SK11 8LZ.
Macclesfield Oriana Choir is a long established and active community

Macclesfield Music Society

The Heritage Centre, Roe Street, Macclesfield.
A registered charity with a large membership. Regular Saturday performances
of piano recitals, string quartets and individual professional soloists.

Manchester Cathedral

Deansgate, Manchester. Tel: 0161-833 2220.
Cantata Choir performances and organ recitals. See main entry – Manchester

Manchester Midday Concerts

Play at various settings, including Thursday lunchtime concerts at
the Royal Exchange Theatre, as well as in St Ann’s Church, St Ann’s
Square, Manchester. Details by phone – Tel: 0161-833 9833.

Manchester String Quartet

Music for all occasions, weddings and corporate functions our speciality.
163 Platt Lane, Fallowfield, Manchester M14 7PY. Tel: 07816 531 424.
Email: Website:

Manchester University Department of Music
University, Denmark Road, Manchester 15. Tel: 0161-275 4982.

Music Group of Manchester,

Base address : 1 Thornton Road, Rusholme, Manchester 13. Tel: 0161-256
Formed in 1991, this five-piece chamber group has achieved great acclaim
in its short lifetime. Playing at venues like the Royal Insurance
Concert Hall in the RNCM.

Northern Chamber Orchestra

Jubilee House, Acton Square, Salford. Tel: 0161-941 7337.
A varied portfolio of classical works including Mahler, Elgar and
Mozart. Music Director : Nicholas Ward. A registered Charity, which
is available for bookings.

Opera North
Based at Leeds Grand Theatre, 46 New Briggate, Leeds LS1 6NU. Tel:
0113 22 33 711.
A Yorshire based company which performs regularly at the Lowry in
Salford Quays. Website:

Palm Court String Quartet

7 Mosswood Park, Didsbury, Manchester M20. Tel: 0161-445 8614.
Available for weddings, functions, dinners, etc.
Website: Email:

Queen Elizabeth Hall

West Street Oldham. Box Office Tel: 0161-911 4072.
Frequent classical recitals, choral and opera. Contact Box Office
for details.

Rochdale Light Orchestra

The Rochdale Light Orchestra was established in April 2008 by a group
of enthusiasts led by composer/conductor Graham Marshall. It brings
together amateur musicians who enjoy rehearsing and performing light-hearted
music of all ages. Composers in our repertory include Sousa, John
Williams, Elgar, Delius, Gounod, Gershwin, Kern and ‘Trad’.
If you play an orchestral instrument and have reached at least Grade
5 or its equivalent, you will be more than welcome to come and join
us. We meet on most Mondays in school term times from 7.30 to 9.30pm
in St. Martin’s Church Hall, Castleton, Rochdale. The hall is part
of the church building. The entrance is in Vicarage Road North – just
off the A664. There is free kerbside parking along both sides of the
Previous experience of playing in an orchestra is not necessary, though
that would obviously be an advantage. But belonging to an orchestra
involves teamwork and commitment to a regular rehearsal schedule as
well as taking part in well-prepared public concerts. (Which probably
sounds more daunting than it really is, if you’re enjoying the shared
experience of music-making in a controlled but relaxed atmosphere!)
We welcome players in every orchestral department, including percussion,
keyboard, harp, saxophones…. The more the merrier! Why not come
and join us?
Further information can be obtained by emailing
or contacting Graham on 01706 642139.

Salford Choral

Contact: Diane Dunning. Tel: 01706 670 251. Email:
Meets on Wednesday evenings at 7.30pm at St Philip’s Church,
St Philip’s Place, off Chapel Street, Salford. Founded in 1947,
is now one of the North West’s leading choirs with some 100
members from all over Greater Manchester. Normally five concerts
a year in Manchester and Salford, working with professional soloists
and orchestras.

St Ann’s Music Society

St Ann’s Square, Manchester. Tel: 0161-834 0239.
Organ recitals at 12.45pm, as well as an extensive programme of other
musical events and performances. Lunchtime concert on Wednesdays at
1.00pm, Piano Recitals on Sundays at 3.00pm. Telephone for programme.

Stockport Amateur Operatic

Contact: Mrs Pat Marney (Chairman),
3 Hazel Close, Marple, Stockport SK6 7QT. Tel: 0845 3 307 304. Email:
Meets on Wednesday evenings at 7.30pm at St. Andrew’s Hall, Gorsey
Mount Street, Stockport. Other rehearsals more frequent approaching
time of annual show in mid-October each year. Annual musical show
presented by Plaza Theatre, Mersey Square, Stockport – Tel: 0161-477

Stockport Symphony Orchestra

Town Hall Ballroom, Stockport. Tel: (Mobile) 07947 474574.
Plays in Stockport Town Hall on certain Saturdays at 7.30pm – phone
for current diary of events. Reputedly the best non-professional orchestra
in the UK. Specialises in presenting rarely heard and adventurous
works of music.

Tatton Hall & Park
Knutsford, Cheshire. Tel: 01565 654 822.

Tarrega Trio, The
32 South Grove, Sale. Tel: 0161-969 5772/485 1458. Light classical
music for all occasions.

University of Salford
Midday Recitals

Normally held in the University’s Maxwell Hall which seats over 1000,
and a major venue for many years of the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra.
Regular midday concerts, and most are free. Phone for details of programme:
Tel: 0161-736 4631.

Victoria Hall Glossop
Frequent classical perf ormances. Contact Tel: 01457-853 137.

… End of Topic].



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This page last updated 8 Feb 12.