Perfect pitch - Classical venue guide

Perfect pitch - Classical venue guide

For those looking for something a little more civilised, Edinburgh and Glasgow have a host of classical venues on offer.

One of the finest exponents of classical music in Scotland is the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, which performs around the country. Catch the RSNO regularly at the Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow (2 Sauchiehall Street, 353 8000) and the Usher Hall, Edinburgh (Lothian Road, 228 1155), although note that the latter is closed for refurbishment until 2009. In the interim, the orchestra will be using the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh (13-29 Nicolson Street, 662 1112).

Also highly recommended is the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, which regularly appears in the same venues as the RSNO and around the country. However, two of the other most prominent venues the SCO appears in are the Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh (Clerk Street, 668 2019) and the City Halls, Glasgow (Candleriggs, 353 8000), which are stunning halls in their own right.

Among the smaller venues putting on classical shows are the attractive St Cecilia’s Hall, Edinburgh (Niddry Street, 650 2427), which is the oldest concert hall in Scotland and second oldest in Britain, while various cathedrals and places of worship also stage infrequent recitals. These include St Giles’ Cathedral, Edinburgh (Royal Mile, 226 0673) and St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Glasgow (300 Great Western Road, 337 2862).

City Halls

Candleriggs, Glasgow, G1 1NQ

Glasgow's oldest purpose built performance space has been entertaining visitors since 1841. The venue houses a traditional shoebox style auditorium as well as rehearsal, recording, broadcasting and webcasting facilities. The programme is predominantly…

Edinburgh Festival Theatre

13–29 Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9FT

With its impressive Colin Ross-designed three-story glass façade, the former Empire Palace Theatre is at once welcoming and grand. It boasts one of the largest stages in the UK; so big that it has occasionally been converted into a studio theatre with…

Glasgow Royal Concert Hall

2 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3NY

Located at the meeting point of two of Glasgow's busiest streets Glasgow Royal Concert Hall is an arts venue and concert hall run by Glasgow Life. Home to the Royal Scottish National Orchestra the venue offers a diverse programme of classic concerts as…

The Queen's Hall

87–89 Clerk Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9JG

A former chapel dating from 1823, the Queen’s Hall is a mid-scale venue that adapts well to a range of musical styles, including rock, pop, classical, jazz, blues, world and folk, as well as the occasional comedy gig. Home to the Scottish Chamber…

St Giles' Cathedral

Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH1 1RE

Dominating the Royal Mile, St Giles’ Cathedral has been one of Edinburgh's religious focal points for approximately 900 years. It is home to some of the best stained glass windows in Scotland, dating from the 19th and 20th centuries, and hosts regular…

St Mary's Episcopal Cathedral

300 Great Western Road, Glasgow, G4 9JB

Usher Hall

Lothian Road, Edinburgh, EH1 2EA

A landmark in the heart of Scotland's capital, the Usher Hall is one of the most outstanding concert halls in the world, well-loved by performers for its fantastic acoustics and boasting a grand organ still used for special recitals, as well as three…