See behind the scenes of Manchester’s prestigious international concert hall. Tours run sporadically throughout the year, so be sure to check the website for dates. Starting either late morning or early afternoon, you will spend approximately an hour and thirty minutes exploring areas of the Bridgewater Hall which typically aren’t open to the public. As you move through the building you will be amazed at the amount of thought put into the Hall’s acoustics. After winning a competition in 1989, Renton Howard Wood Levin designed the building to reflect external noise, whilst maximising the clarity of the acoustic inside as much as possible. So that no matter which of the 2400 seats a person sits in, they can hear the performers as if they are on the front row. Having put on over 250 concerts a year since opening in 1996, the space is designed to accommodate all manner of performers. Alongside the Hall’s three resident orchestras the Hallé, BBC Phil and Manchester Camerata you can find internationally renowned chamber ensembles, soloists and speakers, from a mixture of musical backgrounds.
innovative acoustics and gravity defying architecture
No tour of the Bridgewater Hall would be complete without a chance to get up close and personal with the dominant feature in the main auditorium, the Marcussen Organ. You can hear Wayne Marshall, the Bridgewater’s resident organist, performing music from the rich canon of western organ repertoire as part of their international concert series. During the tour, you’ll find out more about the organ’s maintenance and design.
You will also get the chance to walk through the undercroft, a section of the Hall where you can see the giant support springs that the concert hall sits on. Unfortunately, the undercroft is only accessible via two flights of metal steps, however, the rest of the tour is fully accessible. For those interested in innovative acoustics and gravity defying architecture this tour is a must.
Because of the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, we are unable to bring you our usual recommendations for things to do in Manchester and the North. Our thoughts at this time are with our readers and with the organisations and businesses who make the North of England a great place to live and visit. We hope you stay well and look forward to sharing more unmissable events and places with you later in the year.