How to find cheap tickets to classical concerts in Paris
Paris’ most prestigious concert halls have just revealed their programmes for season 2017-2018. So at ‘classique mais pas has been’ we thought it was high time we shared our top tips for buying concert tickets without breaking the bank…
L’Opéra de Paris
The Opéra de Paris was originally founded by Louis XIV in 1669 as an academy for the greatest musicians to train and perform to royalty. How France has changed since then but the standard of music at the Opéra remains just as high with world-class acts performing in its halls every day. The Opéra de Paris is now based in two concert halls in Paris, the beautiful Palais Garnier and the Bastille. The programme for season 2017-2018 include Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutti, Verdi’s Don Carlos, Puccini’s La Boheme, La Veuve Joyeuse by Franz Lehar and much more- read more here.
My best advice is to buy tickets in advance- as far in advance as possible. The Opéra de Paris has conveniently created a calendar of dates when tickets go on sale. For example, if you book tickets for La Veuve Joyeuse on the 30th May 2017, for a concert on the 25th September you will have access to tickets starting from 15€.
If like most of us, you are not able to book that far ahead, here are a few ideas for finding cheap tickets throughout the year:
- Subscribe to the Opéra de Paris newsletter to hear about upcoming deals (often on a Wednesday at midday).
- The ‘Opéra and you’ page has great deals for under 28s (tickets from 10€) and young families (50% off for under 18s) It is worth having a browse.
- There are interesting new offers on the site. If it is your first time to the Opera as a family, find discounted prices here, or a new ‘-40% for under 40s’ discount is new to season 17/18.
- The Opera has set up an official ticket-exchanging site. Ticket holders who cannot go to their concert sell their ticket at the price they bought it for. It is completely transparent and you can find very interesting deals at the last minute.
- Arrive 2 hours before the concert in front of the Bastille to buy last minute standing tickets for 5 euros. Or, head to the Opera Garnier for 11:30 where last minute tickets are sold at 10 euros.
Philharmonie de Paris
The Philharmonie de Paris, a building that looks more like a spaceship than a symphonic music concert hall, is one of my favourite places to watch a concert. The newly designed hall built in 2015 at Parc de la Villette, North of Paris, has very reasonably priced tickets and is certainly worth the visit. The design of the concert hall means that the audience is sat all around the orchestra- you can be meters away from the percussion or strings section. Their programme offers an exciting mix of symphonic, chamber, world, film music and expositions reaching out to a large range of the public.
Tickets are reasonably priced: a symphonic orchestra concert costs from 10- 50€. To find the best tickets make sure to get on the site on the 29th May at 11am as tickets for the whole season 2017-2018 are available all at once! Once again, under 28s can enjoy 10 euro tickets if booked at least one month in advance.
Maison de la Radio
In 2014, Radio France’s concert hall was entirely renovated with a beautiful new concert hall and 1600 places. Similarly to the Philharmonie de Paris, seats encircle the orchestra so that you are immersed in the music during the concert. Situated right next to the Eiffel Tower, it is the lesser-known concert hall, which means that it is much easier to find cheap tickets. The Orchestre National de France and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France play here on a regular basis. Tickets for Radio France’s concerts are reasonably priced. Be ready on the French site (unfortunately there is no English site) on 1st June at 10am to get the best seats. If you are under 28, four concerts tickets can cost you just 28€. Otherwise, tickets for 10€ are sold at the door 30 minutes before the concert.
Théâtre des Champs-Elysées
The Théâtre des Champs-Elysées was built in 1913 in a unique location between the Avenue de Champs Elysées and the Eiffel Tower. This historic concert hall offers a diverse musical programme. Tickets for season 2017/2018 go on sale on 12th June, on a first come first served basis. You can also pick up 10€ tickets from the Box Office from 1st September.
We hope this helps you find those affordable tickets for a concert in the City of Light. Feel free to comment below with any more useful tips or questions!
By Anna Quinn