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Frequently Asked Questions
and Information for First Timers
What do I wear?
The range is wide, some in suits and dresses, some in jeans, whatever you find comfortable.
When do I applaud?
This is tricky. The tradition is that you wait until the conclusion of the work, last movement in the case of symphonies, concertos, etc. On the other hand, no pun intended, you should feel comfortable expressing your response to the music whenever you feel moved to do so. Italian opera goers cheer or boo in the middle of arias if they have the urge. A safe out is to wait until others start.
How much do I need to know about classical music to appreciate a concert?
No courses necessary. Music is the language of the spirit as much as the mind. The universal language speaks directly to the listener, no interpreter necessary, enjoy!
For a more in depth look at the music being performed, all JSO ticket holders are entitled to attend the complimentary JSO pre-concert lecture "Backstage Glimpses" hosted by Dr. Bruce Brown, JSO Composer in Residence. Backstage Glimpses takes place at 7 pm preceding each subscription concert. Dr. Brown leads a lively, enlightening and informative look at the evening's repertoire. Guest Artists are generally present to give a brief talk on the music they will be performing and to answer audience questions. Backstage Glimpses is held in Federer Rooms AB and C on the main floor just off of the lobby in Potter Center.
Can I bring my child to an evening concert?
Children are welcome to attend all our events provided that they are supervised by an adult. Every child must have a ticket. For a family with small children we encourage you to attend a rehearsal. Phone the JSO office, (517) 782-3221 x117 for details.
Is the JSO a 501(c)3?
Yes! That means any donation you make to the JSO is a tax deductible donation to the full extent provided by law.
How can I make a contribution?
The ways are numerous including annual fund, endowment, planned giving, volunteering and several more. Please visit our support page for more information.
Can I take photographs during the concert?
Photographing or taping JSO concerts is strictly prohibited. No recording devices or cameras are permitted without special authorization from the JSO.
Can I rent the JSO Downtown Music Center for functions?
Yes, our facility at 215 W. Michigan has proved to be an excellent venue for recitals, business meetings and even memorial services.
Can I hire orchestra musicians to play at an event?
Some of our musicians do perform at weddings and other special functions. Please contact the Orchestra Personnel Manager at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If I arrive to a concert late, will I be seated immediately?
The JSO makes every attempt to begin concerts on time. In deference to the comfort and listening pleasure of the audience in the hall, latecomers will not be seated until after the conclusion of the first work on the program, and there will be no seating break during any work. Patrons who leave the hall before or during a work will not be reseated until after the work is completed. Your usher will alert you as soon as it is possible to be seated. House lights are dimmed to indicate that the concert is about to begin.
How can I find out if a concert has been cancelled due to inclement weather?
To find out if a scheduled JSO performance has been cancelled due to inclement weather, hazardous roads, power outages and the like, call the box office at 517-782-3221 x117.
I've misplaced my tickets for tomorrow's concert, what should I do?
If subscription tickets are lost, call 517-782-3221 x117. The JSO will verify the purchase through its records. Subscribers may then pick up an entry pass at the box office prior to the concert. These passes cannot be exchanged. The lost ticket policy does not apply to tickets already exchanged. (If they call the day before the concert, we write passes which the guest picks up at our “will call” table at JCC after 6:30 PM the night of the concert.)
Can I donate my unused tickets?
Ticket holders unable to use or exchange their tickets are encouraged to call the JSO Box Office at (517) 782-3221, ext. 117, at least 24 hours in advance of the concert. The value of each ticket can be used as a tax-deductible contribution. The JSO will send a donation letter and a CD of the missed performance to the donor.
Can I leave my cellphone on during a concert?
Cellular phones, pagers and alarm watches should be turned off while in the hall. Patrons should ask for the House Manager to report an emergency during a concert, or to make special arrangements to receive emergency phone calls during a concert.
The JSO appreciates the audience’s cooperation in avoiding any extraneous sounds during the concerts. The hall microphones used to record the orchestra are extremely sensitive and will even record the sound of a wristwatch chime.
How can I subscribe to your online news letter?
Sign up for the JSO's online newsletter and email club. Please view our Interlude publication. Join our email list here.
Where could I dine before a concert?
Several fine restaurants are located in Jackson. For a list, please see our Affiliated Restaurants page.
Does the JSO provide discounted ticket prices for groups?
Special rates are available for groups of 10 or more. Call (517) 782-3221 for details.
Can I do volunteer work for the JSO?
To volunteer for fund-raising projects and other exciting events, visit our volunteer page or contact the JSO office at (517) 782-3221.