New to the Philharmonic?

If you’re reading this page, that means you’re hopefully joining us soon for a concert, and we love that. We care a LOT about growing our audience and making sure people who are newer to classical music have a great experience. Have a question that’s not answered here? Send us an email, and we'll respond. We may even add your question to this list!

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Where do you perform?


The South Carolina Philharmonic is based in Columbia, South Carolina and performs throughout the season at the Koger Center for the Arts. Over the years we have expanded our programming to include family matinees at the Koger, chamber ensembles in local bars and restaurants (Chamber Crawl), outdoor performances at Historic Columbia Homes (Concert in the Gardens) and a huge 4th of July Celebration at Segra Park (Fireworks with the Phil). Our goal is to continue to reach new audiences and perform in new venues, better living up to our name to serve the state!

Koger Center for the Arts

1051 Greene St, Columbia, SC 29201


What should I wear?


There is no dress code! Most people will be wearing business casual or slightly dressy casual clothes, but you’ll see everything from jeans to cocktail dresses. Some people enjoy dressing up and making a special night of it. We just want you to be comfortable so you can enjoy the music!

I’ve never been to the Philharmonic before. What should I expect?


It’s going to be fun! We encourage you to let go of any preconceptions you may have about classical music or the concert experience. Seeing a symphony is awe-inspiring. There is something about the live experience that just can’t be beaten.

If I don’t know a lot (or anything) about classical music, do I need to study beforehand?


The music will absolutely speak for itself. Just come and enjoy it! Over time, many frequent concertgoers do find deeper enjoyment if they prepare for a concert. This can be simple, like reading the program notes beforehand.

You can also enjoy our virtual Pre-Concert Chats with Music Director Morihiko Nakahara - available on our YouTube Channel the week of the concert. 

Will I recognize any of the music?


Probably! Classical music is all around us in commercials, movie soundtracks, television themes, cartoons, retail shops, and even some elevators. Popular music often quotes classical melodies, as well. Hearing it performed live by a full orchestra is a completely different experience, though.

Should I arrive early?


Plan to arrive at least 30 minutes before concert time, so you can find your seat, check your phone and absorb the atmosphere. If you’re late, you may end up listening for a few minutes from the lobby. If that happens, the usher will show you your seat at a pause in the program so your arrival won’t disturb other concertgoers.

How long is the concert?


It varies, but most Philharmonic concerts are about 90 minutes to two hours long, with an intermission at the halfway point.

May I take pictures?


We do ask you to silence and put your phone away before the concert begins. Any questions? Drop by our info table in the lobby and we’d be happy to answer them.

Audio and video recording are not allowed at South Carolina Philharmonic concerts out of respect for the performers and your fellow concertgoers. However, you are encouraged to take photos before and after the concert (remember to tag us @thescphil).

May I bring my kids?


Absolutely! It’s a great experience for children seven and older. 1/2 Price Student Rush tickets are available 30 minutes prior to each concert. 

What is the difference between your Masterworks Series and other concerts?


Our Masterworks Series concerts represent our largest program. We play pieces by Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Bernstein, Mozart, Copland, and more. The Pops Series is where you’ll hear “popular” music like movie music, Holiday music, Broadway, etc.