Seattle Chamber Music Society

James Ehnes, Artistic Director

New to SCMS? //

New to SCMS? We’re so excited you decided to take the plunge into chamber music! Trust us, you won’t look back!



Pre-Concert Recitals

Attending a concert is a great way to spend a winter or summer evening. Each concert features a free 30-minute Pre-Concert Recital, which features one or two Festival musicians, performing works that they choose and introduce with informal commentary. These recitals are very popular and a great introduction to chamber music. You don’t need a ticket and you may sit anywhere you like.

If you only came for the recital and want to stay for the concert, we typically have a handful of tickets for sale at the door. Coffee, cocktails, wine and beer are available for purchase in the Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall lobby.


Attending the Concerts

This is Seattle so you’ll like see all types of outfits. Whether you want to wear your Gortex jacket and sandals with socks, or you want to dress up with fancy shoes and pearls – you’ll fit right in at the concerts! Why?

Because it is all about the music.

These musicians, hard-core international soloists, concertmasters of the world’s greatest orchestras, educators, child prodigies and rock stars of the classical music world come together just for these performances! This is the equivalent of Hendrix and Clapton jamming….combinations you will never see anywhere else.

Each concert lasts about two hours. You’ll receive a printed program in the lobby from one of our friendly ushers, you can peruse our CD rack with selections from that night’s concert and recordings that our musicians have made, plus books and other music inspired items. At intermission, the lobby is an effervescent cocktail of buzzing conversation full of superlatives for the performance we’ve just heard.

After the performance you’ll have a chance to ask several of the musicians from that night’s concert your questions at our Meet the Artists Q&A that follows every performance.

If you aren’t able to join us at Benaroya Hall for a concert, every concert is broadcast live on Classical KING FM 98.1. During the summer, we take the Festival outdoors to Seattle parks, with live audio-broadcasts; pack a picnic and you have the perfect Seattle summer evening while you listen to the greatest chamber music.

These concerts are exciting, enlivening experiences – when the lights go down and the musicians come out on stage, everyone is paying attention. When the music starts, you find yourself completely absorbed in the spectacle before you. This is a Festival of Musicians – they come together in Seattle to rehearse, eat together, and perform music for wildly enthusiastic audiences.

We’re glad you are here!

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