Putting your English skills into action in a new environment is a great way to increase your confidence. Going to a concert is a wonderful cultural experience, and a great opportunity to learn and use everyday English words. So let’s talk about concerts and learn some new vocabulary.
You can attend different types of music concerts, such as ‘classical’, ‘rock’ and ‘pop’. ‘Classical music’ is associated with orchestras or ensembles who often to play the music of ‘composers’ such as Mozart or Beethoven. ‘Rock music’ is guitar-based music. Think of bands such as The Killers or Kings of Leon. ‘Pop music’, is short for ‘popular music’ and can be easily defined as happy music appealing more to a younger audience. One Direction and Justin Bieber are examples of pop music.
Okay, now imagine you are going to go to a ‘rock concert’. If you have pre-ordered your tickets online, you can collect them from the ‘box office’. A ‘box office’ is where you purchase tickets or provide your booking information to pick up the tickets you’ve already paid for. Sometimes instead of a ticket you will get a ‘wristband’ – this is a paper or plastic bracelet that goes around your wrist to show that you have paid for a ticket.
When you enter the ‘venue’ (the building the concert is in), you will have your tickets checked by a doorman. Then you can enter the venue to find your seats, or decide where you want to stand. If you’re standing, do you prefer to stand at the front on the ‘barrier’ (the closest you can get to the stage)? Or would you rather stand in the middle near the ‘mixing board’? This is where the people who work for the band make sure that the sound is perfect. For that reason, is usually a good place to stand.
The ‘support band’ will be the first to come onto the stage. This is usually a lesser-known band who plays to ‘warm up’ the crowd. They play a few of their songs to help get people excited about the band they have come to see: the ‘headline act’.
Once the support band leaves the stage, it’s finally time for the band you’ve been waiting for to come on. They will play their most famous songs and some new songs for about an hour before they leave the stage. This is when everyone cheers and shouts ‘Encore!’, meaning that the crowd wants the band to play a few more songs. The band will come back and play about three more songs before it’s time to leave and the concert is over.
Now that you know what to expect from a ‘rock concert’ and you’ve learnt new terms such as ‘support band’, ‘encore’ and ‘box office’, you’re ready to attend a concert in an English-speaking country!