Concert Etiquette

Our concert dress is formal evening attire. Gentlemen wear dinner suit, white shirt and black bow tie. If you don't have suitable clothing, please speak to Kate Mason, one of our second sopranos, who has access to a small collection of mens formal wear. Ladies wear a long black dress, or a long black skirt or evening trousers with a black evening blouse or top. If your skirt is not full length, please wear opaque black tights. If preferred, smart dress black trousers may also be worn although not in the front row. Sleeves must be at least elbow length.

Please apply perfumes and deodorants very sparingly as strong smells can disrupt some people’s breathing whilst singing. Please avoid too much bling if wearing jewellery and ladies should not wear wrist jewellery if wearing elbow length sleeves.

During the Performance

Our normal concerts are in St Machar's Cathedral but the guidelines below should still apply to performances in other venues.

End of the first half

If there is applause, Peter will simply acknowledge it briefly, leave the stage and not return. The choir should leave their places if they wish to do so once the applause has stopped.

End of the concert

Choir should remain standing until Peter and the soloists have left the stage and then sit.

Prolonged applause

Peter and soloists will then return – maybe more than once. He may also acknowledge individuals in the orchestra and choir. The choir at this point should stay sitting and applaud any return to the stage of soloists or nominated individuals as long as the audience are doing so.

When Peter asks ask the choir to stand again

We should stop clapping (as otherwise it appears that we are applauding themselves!) and smile at the audience.


It is not the view of successive Ministers (nor of the choir committee) that applause is inappropriate. The stamping of feet, however, is not appropriate at a concert of sacred music, and you are asked to desist from this.


A token of the Choir and audience’s appreciation may be given to one or more soloist performers.

General conduct

Musical performance is about the visual as well as the aural. It matters very much how you look and how you conduct yourselves in front of an audience. Please be professional and stay in character at all times. There are very few circumstances in which talking to each other on stage is necessary.

Aberdeen Bach Choir
Scottish Registered Charity Number SC008609

OSCR logo
Aberdeen Bach Choir Logo