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Old 08-25-2013, 01:13 PM
 
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If those who go to symphony or other fine arts concerts in the larger cities, how do people dress for such occasions? I know casual dress is much more common now but do most men still wear suits and women more formal dresses or do people dress in all varieties?
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Old 08-25-2013, 01:29 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
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Last time I was at a symphony concert I wore a black sundress and no one seemed to bat an eye . so I would say a nice sundress or a nice long dress would be okay as long as it is a solid color .
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Old 08-25-2013, 01:48 PM
 
Location: southwestern PA
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Most men DO wear suits, and you will see the occasional tux.
Most women wear either dresses or pants with a great top.
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Old 08-25-2013, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Earth Wanderer, longing for the stars.
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In NY I would see people in jeans, even, but that wasn't the norm/ Men wore jackets, if not full suits. I wore the dresses that I wore to work. I would see some women in gowns, but they were also the exception. I think NY is much more forgiving than some other places. You have students who love the classics and why should they be deprived of such beauty because they have little money?
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Old 08-25-2013, 02:07 PM
 
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Prepare yourself for the weather you have to deal with. Be neat and tidy in your appearance and try to minimize the perfumes and strong fragrances. Others in the audience may not agree with your scents which takes away from their enjoyment of the symphony as well. There's nothing worse than trying to enjoy a show and you have to sit beside someone who sprayed themselves twenty times over with their strongest fragrance.

I don't agree that you need to go super formal all the time, but slovenly casual clothes don't belong at the symphony. Wear a smart outfit with the right shoes that don't bring too much attention.
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Old 08-25-2013, 04:05 PM
 
Location: South Carolina
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My sister reminded me that I wore a nice light black shawl with the sundress and nice black heels . I had forgotten that ....
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Old 08-25-2013, 07:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kanhawk View Post
If those who go to symphony or other fine arts concerts in the larger cities, how do people dress for such occasions? I know casual dress is much more common now but do most men still wear suits and women more formal dresses or do people dress in all varieties?
I prefer to wear either a dress, or a nice pair of pants and nice blouse. My son (he is 20) will not even attend a symphony or a play without a tie.
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Old 08-25-2013, 07:18 PM
 
Location: The Old Dominion
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If it's the Berlin Philharmonic, you'd better dress well.
Those are good-looking people!
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Old 08-25-2013, 07:48 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
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I've seen everything at symphony concerts. Personally, I'd say a little dressed up is good. No formal wear. No flip flops. For holiday concerts, I think people dress up a bit more, especially with seasonal duds. But even then, I've seen everything.
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Old 08-25-2013, 08:21 PM
 
Location: New York City
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Originally Posted by kanhawk View Post
If those who go to symphony or other fine arts concerts in the larger cities, how do people dress for such occasions? I know casual dress is much more common now but do most men still wear suits and women more formal dresses or do people dress in all varieties?
Nowadays people wear almost anything, but suit is never out of place at an orchestra concert. I wouldn’t wear anything less than “smart casual,” which to me means a blazer, trousers, dress shoes and no tie. This would be especially appropriate for a summer concert.

Opening nights of the season tend to be dressier—often suits and cocktail dresses with a bit of sparkle. Once a year there may be a gala performance where some people wear black tie and evening dresses, but they’re becoming rare. Even in New York I’ve never been to a concert where everyone was in black tie.

The most important thing is to feel comfortable. Wear what you would wear to a religious service or a nice restaurant. You don’t have to buy a suit or a dress just to go to the symphony. On the other hand, if you have some nice clothes, wear them! There are so few occasions where people dress up anymore.

Also, the opera and the ballet tend to be dressier than the symphony and theater is less so. Smart casual is pretty standard for the theater and there are a lot of cocktail dresses at the opera.

(Yes, I work in the arts and go to the theater, symphony and opera often.)
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