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Are you getting ready for your first experience at the Philharmonie? How exciting! Here are questions we’ve often been asked by first-timers and which you might find helpful to look at. See you soon!
A woman discovering the Foyer

Before the concert

What’s the best way to get to the Philharmonie?

You can travel to the Philharmonie by car, by public transportation, by bike or, of course, by foot, depending on where you’re visiting us from. For more information and to find the option that suits you best, read through our dedicated Getting here page. That's also where you'll find all the details pertaining to parking at the Philharmonie. It’s also worth noting that we operate a special shuttle service from Trier and back on certain days – just look out for the tiny shuttle sign near the date of your concert.

When should I arrive?

That’s really up to you, but we’d stay anytime from an hour to five minutes before the concert starts for a regular performance, and 30 minute before if you’re attending a children’s event.

How accessible is the Philharmonie to people with reduced mobility?

Whether it’s a broken leg, a pregnancy or a disability, there are plenty of reasons why moving can become a challenge. Whatever your circumstances might be, we’ll do our best to make your experience with us as smooth and enjoyable as can be! Visit this page to find out more about accessibility at the Philharmonie.

What if I arrive late?

Bummer. If you arrive after the performance has started, the doors will be closed and you won’t be able to go into the hall :( Our friendly ushers will try to find an appropriate time to let you in. That might be during a break between two mouvements or at intermission. All the more reason to plan your journey to the Philharmonie and arrive well ahead of time!

How should I dress?

Just come as you are! We’ve got people of all creeds and styles visiting the Philharmonie. Some are arriving straight from the office, some like to change into something slightly fancier, others simply wear clothes they feel happy and comfortable in. There is no particular expectation. The only dress code applies to orchestra musicians, who usually wear white tie for men and black outfits for women – quite a sight!

How can I learn about the music I’ll hear?

Here at the Philharmonie, we know the concert experience actually starts well before the musicians come on stage. Our Evening Programmes, which are the printed booklets we distribute to each member of our audience on the day of the concert, are typically made available online five days before the concert – just head to your event’s page on our website to read it. You are also welcome to visit Phil+, our multimedia hub, where you’ll find a world of content ranging from artists’ interviews to podcasts and blog posts about composers.  

What should I do when I arrive?
Relax! Don’t be intimidated by the Grand Foyer’s unusual height and the crowd of people there: just take some time to look around you and find your marks. Our ushers who typically stand by the entrance before the concert will greet you and hand you a tiny booklet: that’s your Evening Programme, which will tell you everything you need to know about the music and the artists you’re about to see perform.
Now, all that’s left for you to do is wait for the gong ̶ why not take time to walk around and explore with a glass of bubbles from one of the Foyer’s many bars?
Is there somewhere I can leave my coat?

Of course! It’s very important you feel comfortable during your experience at the Philharmonie, and that includes getting rid of your coat or any larger item you might be carrying with you. Simply follow the signs to our staffed cloakroom, where our friendly team will keep your belongings safe for you. And it's free!

I can’t find my tickets, what should I do?

Don’t panic. Simply give the box office a ring or approach us at the Caisse du soir (evening box office) before the concert. We’ll do our best to help!

What’s with the gong?

Not to worry: just a reminder to finish your glass if you have one and gently head to the performance hall. You will hear it ring three times: 15 minutes, 10 minutes and 5 minutes before the concert. It’s kind of like your alarm clock in the morning: no need to stress out the first time, just hit snooze and relax for a few more minutes.

Where do I sit?
When it’s time to make your way to the performance hall, get ready to show your ticket to our friendly ushers, who will be waiting for you by the door. Once they’ve scanned it and you’re in, simply look for the row and number indicated on your ticket, and voilà! If in doubt, don’t hesitate to ask our staff, who will be happy to guide you to your seat.
Just a little note: if you are attending a performance at the Grand Auditorium, your ticket will not only show you a row and seat number, but also a seating area: Parterre, Balcon, Tour, etc. That’s because the hall is so big that not everyone can enter through one door. Signs around the Foyer should show you the way to your seating area but, once again, don’t hesitate to ask our staff if you’re in any doubt! No one has ever gotten lost in the Philharmonie on a concert night, you’ll be just fine :)
If you don’t see a row or seat number on your ticket, don’t worry: no one else does! This simply means your concert has a free seating scheme, so you can sit anywhere you like. This is the case for most of our family events, as well as a few special concerts in the year, such as the Chrëschtconcert. If you’re ever in doubt, ask one of our friendly ushers!

A living masterwork

On top of the Kirchberg...

With its unusually immaculate facade, countless columns and curvy walls, that mysterious building which we call the Philharmonie has a way of feeling quite out-of-this-world… No need to be intimidated: get to know it inside and out as you prepare to push its door!

The ceiling of the Foyer

During the concert

Why isn't anybody clapping?

Be it a symphony, a concerto or a sonata, a piece of classical music typically entails several sections, also called movements. Although it can be very tempting to clap when one of these sections ends, as they are often beautiful and virtuosic, concert etiquette recommends not to... Why? Because the artist(s) may have won a battle, but they not the war yet! In other words, the challenge of the performance isn’t over and they still need to focus in order to power through the end. So, save the clapping and the cheering for when it's all over, and please don’t worry: you're not being impolite, and professional musicians know how to sense their audience’s appreciation in the silence between the movements.

How do I know what’s being played?

Your Evening Programme, which you received upon entering the Philharmonie or the performance hall, contains everything you need to know about the concert, starting with the detailed list of pieces on the first page, their respective duration and when intermission takes place, if there is one.

Now flip through the rest of the booklet. In the middle lies sometimes a pink, English-language double-page spread. This is a bite-sized, bullet-point summary of everything you need to know about the music and the composers at hand: a nice starting point if you’re looking for something straightforward.

Your Evening Programme otherwise entails several longer articles in French and German. These are written by music specialists, journalists and sometimes members of our team who give their expert perspective the programme. Finally, the last pages typically include the biographies of the artists performing. You’re welcome to read through your Evening Programme as the music plays!

Can I take photos?

«We only really see with our hearts, what is essential remains invisible to the eyes»… In this spirit (and also to avoid distracting musicians on stage or other people in the audience), we ask you not to take any photo or video as long as the music is playing. But the applause beginning is your cue to take out the camera and immortalise your evening at the Philharmonie!

How long does a concert last?

It really depends! You can find that information on our website and in our Musical Diary, or in your Evening Programme on the day of the concert.

Should I eat before arriving to the Philharmonie?

Sure thing if that's what you prefer, but don't forget there are also dining options available to you directly at the Philharmonie, from light bites in the Foyer to a three–course meal at the restaurant Tempo. We've compiled everything you need to know on this page, so you can choose what works best for you.

Is there a break?

Most classical concerts include a 20-minute break, called «intermission». Musicians will leave the stage to take a rest in their dressing rooms, and you too can catch your breath and go stretch your legs. The Foyer bars are typically open at intermission, so you’re welcome to grab a bite or have a drink.

Wait… The programme is over, so why do they keep playing?

If you’re attending a classical concert for the first time, you might be surprised by one of two things when the concert is over. First of all, there’s a lot of applause. Like, really a lot. The orchestra rises and sits again and again, the conductor (and the soloists if there are any) leave the stage several times, only to return to even more applause... Just embrace it as one of the many quirky little rituals that give the classical world its particular charm.

After the applause, one musician or even the entire orchestra might also start playing a piece that’s not in the programme. This is called an «encore» (French for «more»), a little treat to thank the audience for their support and presence. The fun part is to try to recognise the piece in question. But whether you guess what it is or not, just enjoy it!

After the concert

Can I stay around after the concert?

Course you can! The show may be over, but the magic definitely goes on. There’s nothing like sharing thoughts and impressions with friends if you’ve come with company, or simply letting the experience sink in before you go home. You might also be hungry after one or two hours of intense sounds and emotions! Whatever it is that you need, the Grand Foyer’s bars and comfortable seating area remain accessible for up to one hour after the concert is over, so don’t hesitate to make full use of them!   

How can I dig deeper into the music?

The Evening Programme that was handed to you upon entering the Philharmonie is yours to keep and to continue browsing through after you’ve gone home! We also have curated a digital library called «Phil+» on our website, complete with stories to read, listen to and watch on your desktop or mobile.

How can I find out about future events?
Flip through your Evening Programme: the booklet’s final pages typically show recommendations for upcoming concerts and events. You’re also welcome to grab a copy of our Musical Diary or Programme of the month: we typically leave some around the Foyer or by the cloakroom for people to take home with them. Otherwise, simply browse our website to find out more!  
If you head back to the event’s webpage, you will seea list of 1 to 3 concerts selected by our team. Whether it’s the artists, the composers, or the style of music, the items in this selection all have something in common with the event you experienced, so why not start planning your next step there?
Are there any special discounts I could benefit from next time?

If you’re 30 or under, most of our concerts will only cost you 10 €! Visit our dedicated page to find out more about the Phil30 scheme

What’s the best (and fastest) way to leave the car park after the performance?
Yes, you actually can escape the endless queue in front of the pay station at the end of a concert! To know all the tricks in the book, you’d have to visit the website of the parking administrator, Indigo, but here are already a few tips from us:
- On concert evenings, you will be offered a special rate, called the "event rate". After parking your car, go to the pay station, choose this option and pre-pay your stay. Unless you're really lingering at the bar for hours after the concert, you should be able to smoothly hit the road, without having to go through the pay station again!
- Indigo also has a downloadable app for iPhone and Android that offers subscriptions, discounts and other good deals. To find out more, visit
Can I support the Philharmonie?

If your concert experience really struck a chord and you’d like to take a more serious commitment to the Philharmonie, then do check out PhilaPhil, the Philharmonie’s circle of supporters. Encounters with artists, special dinners, backstage visits, box offices advantages… In exchange for a partially tax-deductible annual fee, you’ll get access to a wide range of advantages and become part of a tight-knight family of music lovers. What's more, we launched PhilaPhil New Generation, a scheme specifically dedicated to under 40s in the 23/24 season.  

A guided tour in the backstage

Discovery Nights

A guided tour, a cocktail reception, and finally a concert! Explore the Philharmonie’s backstage area and add an exciting social element to the evening.
Find out more
A guided tour in the Foyer

Guided Tours

Step outside the beaten path and get to know the Philharmonie by day or by night with one of our Guided Tours, offered and in four languages.
Find out more