Mapping London’s concert life 1672–1749

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Before the advent in London of public commercial concerts in the late seventeenth century, formal and informal music-making occurred in both private or semi-private as well as fully public venues. Private or semi-private venues such as churches, royal palaces, or city livery company halls were mainly the preserve of formal or ritual music performed by professional musicians. While public venues, such as taverns, fairs and other open-air venues, were dominated by informal music making by semi-professional or amateur performers. The gradual shift of formal music making into the public sphere, as witnessed by the development of commercial concert-giving in London, was accompanied both by a growth in the number and type of concert venues and by the increasing dominance of professional musicians in these new public locations.
The location of both the performing venues and the places or methods of ticket distribution can have an important effect on the success or failure of an artistic event since there is a limit to the amount of effort a consumer is prepared to make to travel to a venue or to purchase a ticket. For any point of sale, the further away from it that the consumer is located, the less likely they are to attend. As with retail outlets, the best location for cultural venues is one that is in close proximity both to its potential consumers and to other venues of the same kind, as the synergising effect increases attendance.
Using interaction between a database and Tableau data visualisation software to overlay data about musician’s residences, concert and ticket venues over time on a contemporary map allows one to investigate the potential audience for the new public concerts and its interaction with performing musicians.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 3 Feb 2018
EventMapping the Musical City - Senate House, University of London and Newcastle University in London, London, United Kingdom
Duration: 2 Feb 20183 Feb 2018


ConferenceMapping the Musical City
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
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