For ages 7+
Extra extra extra very good. Fantastic music!
Young audience member, 2013/14 Family Concerts
Voyage with BCMG and find your pathway through multi-layered musical landscapes! Created in collaboration with Birmingham-based theatre company Stan’s Cafe, BCMG Family Concerts introduce young people and their families to the exciting world of contemporary music.
These hour-long performances weave music with photographic projection, atmospheric lighting and narration to create colourful and engaging concerts to ignite young imaginations.
This exhilarating programme of short pieces will paint a series of musical scenes. Simon Bainbridge’s Path to Othona will be presented alongside a newly commissioned series of photographs by Paul Gaffney exploring a journey through the countryside of Othona in Suffolk commissioned by GRAIN Photography Hub, the Library of Birmingham, Stan’s Cafe and BCMG for these concerts; and postcard-like images from the Library of Birmingham’s archive will complement the musical postcards of Runes from a Holy Island.
There will be a fun activity café an hour before each performance – in which families will create musical lines that will complete Duncan Chapman’s new piece ahead of its premiere in the concerts!
Additionally, young concert-goers are encouraged to get involved by submitting drawings of their own favourite places, which will be displayed as part of the concert experience. Postcard templates can be downloaded from ‘downloads’ link on the right of this page.
Really great range of instruments, compositions and fun theatrics.
Parent, 2013/14 Family Concerts
Simon Bainbridge: Path to Othona
Tansy Davies: Dark Ground
Edmund Finnis: In Situ
Peter Maxwell Davies: Runes from a Holy Island
Betsy Jolas: Music to go
Duncan Chapman: Six Journeys to Stillness (world premiere / BCMG commission)
Paul Gaffney: new photography (GRAIN Photography Hub, Library of Birmingham, Stan’s Cafe and Birmingham Contemporary Music Group co-commission)
£5 all tickets
plus transaction fee*
No charge for children under 3 years of age.
Buy three tickets and the fourth family member gets in for free!
A free concert programme is included in the ticket price for every BCMG concert at CBSO Centre.
Tickets can be booked in advance via:
The Town Hall and Symphony Hall Box Office, Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2EA
Box Office: 0121 345 0491
On the door tickets can be purchased at CBSO Centre on the day subject to availability. All seating is unreserved unless otherwise stated.
*£3 transaction fee, plus £1 (optional) postage, will be charged on all bookings except purchases made in person at the Town Hall or Symphony Hall Box Office
Information No.0121 616 2616
CBSO Centre is equipped with adapted toilet facilities, key signposting in Braille and the hall is fitted with an infra-red amplification system (receivers are available on request). Limited free parking can be arranged on request.
Access to CBSO Centre’s concert hall, bar and toilets is all flat, with no steps or ramps. The hall configuration is flexible, meaning we can accommodate specific seating requests.
Guide dogs are very welcome at BCMG concerts. You can either keep them with you in the auditorium during the concert or event, or we will be happy to look after your dog for you in the foyer while you enjoy the performance.
Where will we sit?
Seating varies dependent on the programme but is always designed to ensure that the audience is as close to the musicians as possible with a clear view. At some performances seating will be on cushions on the floor, although chairs will also be available for adults.
What refreshments are available?
Refreshments (including healthy snacks) are available during the activity café prior to the performance.
What other activities/attractions are available?
Each Families Concert Performance and Families@4 Concert starts with an hour of activities prior to the concert itself. Designed to complement the music in the main programme activities are interactive, creative and musical and aim to provide enjoyable experiences and insight into the music that follows.
What parking is available?
CBSO Centre’s main entrance is on Berkley Street and there is space to drop off directly outside the venue and metered parking on all nearby streets. There are also car parks at Brindleyplace and Mailbox, both within a 5-minute journey of the Centre. Limited free parking can be arranged for disabled visitors on request by contacting BCMG’s Marketing Manager
How long will the concert last?
Each Families Concert Performance and Families@4 Concert is an hour in length, with no interval, and made up of a variety of short pieces showcasing a range of instruments.
Is there an interval?
No, but concerts are informal and friendly and if you need to access the toilets during the performance that is fine.
What ages are the concerts appropriate for?
Both the Family Concert and Families@ Performance are designed for families with children aged 7 and over. However all children are different and you might find that younger children really enjoy our varied programmes.
Will children and young people like the concerts?
All the music is chosen with a young audience in mind and we aim to present a varied programme, showcasing a range of instruments and presented in an interesting and interactive way. Our Family Concerts are developed and presented in partnership with the theatre company Stans Café and are always engaging using a variety of other art-forms to present and illustrate the music.
How will we know what we’re watching/listening to?
A complimentary programme is available for all children and young people giving age appropriate descriptions of the music with interesting links and things to listen out for. Additionally many of our concerts include introductions by the musicians or conductor giving an insight into the piece in more detail. Both the Family Concert and Families@ Performance include introductions to the music as part of the performance.
Can we meet the musicians or try out instruments?
Our activity café before each concert includes musical activities where we have a range of percussion instruments available for participants to play. Musicians also often stay in the hall after the performance to show families their instruments and answer questions.
If we like this what else can we do?
We have a regular programme of concerts at the CBSO Centre in Birmingham, and would welcome you at any of these events. We also present an ongoing programme of workshops (Music Maze, ZigZag Ensemble and Feel the Buzz) for children and young people aged 8 upwards helping them to make their own music as well as school projects and family activities during the Family Arts Festival annually in October. Please contact the learning team for more information.