What Is a Concert?

A concert is a live performance of music by one or more musical performers, such as bands or singers. The event may also include other forms of entertainment, such as theatrical staging and audience interaction. Concerts range from small intimate settings to large events held in stadiums and arenas. A concert is often a special event, such as a celebration or commemoration of an important person or occasion. It can also be a benefit, fundraiser, or promotional event for a charity.

The word concert is derived from the Latin for “agreement in design or plan.” In music, it refers to a combination of voices or instruments in harmony. In a religious context, it is used to describe a service in which a number of people participate in the singing or playing of musical instruments, such as a concert of flutes and kitharas.

Although the term concert is sometimes used to refer to a single performance, it generally means a series of performances given at regular intervals. The nature of a concert may vary by genre, as well as the specific musicians or band participating in it. A concert may also have a particular theme, or may focus on the work of one individual artist.

Most concerts do not involve any sort of theatrical staging, although the concept can be incorporated into opera or musicals, for example. Typically, a concert does not include theatrical props or costumes, although exceptions can be made for special effects, such as pyrotechnics or other visual spectacles. Some singers, especially in popular music genres, augment their concerts with additional entertainment devices, such as pre-recorded accompaniment or back-up dancers.

Historically, the classical musical concert evolved from an orchestral work to the solo piano concerto and then to the chamber music concerto (with one violinist, for example). The symphony concerto eventually replaced the concerto as the dominant form of a composition.

In recent years, a concert of contemporary written music has been gaining in popularity. This type of concert is not as well-established as other types of concert, such as those devoted to works from the past, but it has been established enough to allow programmers to build an integrated repertoire. This has helped to compensate for the paradoxical distance between contemporary works and their historical roots, by establishing twofold proximity – the proximity of fruitful exceptions with older pieces, and that of a historicized proximity with a more recently composed past, consisting of a concert repertoire.

The term concert is also occasionally used as a verb, meaning “to agree in opinion or feeling.” This usage tends to be more common in English than in French, although it does appear in some French publications. It is not considered standard by most grammarians. Nevertheless, it is not considered incorrect, and some students of French learn the meaning at an early age. Less commonly, the word concert is pronounced with an accent on the second syllable, as in a concert with your neighbors.