How Long Does A Concert Last? Plus, 17 Things You Should Know About Concerts

people cheering and dancing at a music concert

Last updated on September 1st, 2022 at 10:15 pm

Whether you’re figuring out if you’ll be home by curfew or making sure you’re in bed at a decent time, you might be wondering how long does a concert last. Fortunately, concerts have an average universal time length. Below, we’ll talk about how long you can expect a musical concert to go on for, plus a few other important facts.

How long does a concert last?

So how long is a concert exactly? A rock concert is generally about 3 to 4 hours long. This depends on how many acts are on the lineup. Typically there are three performers for the night, with the headlining artist playing the longest set.

How many songs are in a band’s setlist?

A typical set list for a rock band may contain 10 to 20 songs, while a classical orchestra may play upwards of 30 or 40 pieces in a single concert. The performance length also depends on if the artist is the opening act or the headliner.

How Long Does A Concert Last

What time do concerts usually start?

Most concerts typically start in the evening hours, around 7 or 8 pm. This allows people to finish up their work day and still have time to get to the venue and find their seats before the show begins.

Oftentimes, the doors will open an hour before the music begins. For example, the details on the concert poster might say 7/8 pm, which means doors open at 7 pm, and music begins at 8 pm.

What time do concerts usually end?

Generally, most concerts end around 10 or 11 pm. This gives people time to enjoy the encore (if there is one) and then make their way out of the venue and head back home.

If a show goes on any longer, it can end up being too much for fans. Personally, my lower back starts to hurt midway through the show due to standing on hard concrete.

How long does an opening act typically play for?

An opening act typically plays for around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on their popularity and the length of the concert.

This gives them enough time to play a few of their most popular songs and warm the crowd up for the main event.

How long do headlining musicians play for?

Usually a headlining act will perform a 90 minute set. This can vary greatly depending on the musician or band. Some may play for two hours or more, while others may only play for an hour. Ultimately, it all depends on the concert and the performers.

How Long Does A Concert Last
Photo by Smouse

What time should I arrive at a concert?

It is recommended that you arrive at a concert around 30 minutes to an hour before it starts. This allows you time to find your seat (or place, grab a drink, and settle before the show begins.

Of course, if you are attending a general admission concert, then you may want to arrive even earlier to ensure that you get a good spot.

Some fans prefer to skip the opening act and arrive later just to see the headlining act. This allows for more pre-gaming, less paying for overpriced drinks, and listening to songs you don’t know.

What is an encore?

The encore is the last song or set of songs that a band or musician plays at a concert. The band will leave the stage as if they are finished for the night.

Then the crowd will begin chanting “Encore!” or “One more song”. If they cheer loud enough and for long enough, it will cause the artist to come back on stage and play another song.

It is often seen as a way to thank the fans for their support and to give them one last chance to enjoy the music before the concert ends.

Sometimes, an encore can be impromptu and spontaneous, while others may be planned in advance. Regardless, it is always a special moment at a concert.

Nowadays, most artists plan for an encore, saving their number one hit for the last song of the night.

What should I wear to a concert?

It depends on your personality. Some people wear jeans and a t-shirt, while others may take it up a notch.

EDM concerts are known for fans to wear scandalous clothing, glitter on their face, and bring small props to compliment their outfit.

Overall, use your best judgment and just be yourself.

Bassnectar Crowd - Photo by Chris Taylor
Bassnectar Crowd – Photo by Chris Taylor

What should I bring to a concert?

You may want to bring a small bag or purse with your essentials (e.g. wallet, phone, etc.).

However, if you are going to be standing in general admission at a rock concert for example, then you probably won’t need to bring anything other than your ID and debit card. Carrying anything else may be a nuisance.

Do music venues have metal detectors?

This can vary depending on the venue, but most typically do not have metal detectors. However, some larger venues may have them in place for security purposes.

The venue’s website should have information on security measures in place, as well as a list of things you can and cannot bring inside the venue.

Can you get into a music venue without an ID?

This depends on the venue, but most venues require some form of ID for entry. This is usually to ensure that only people of legal age are allowed into the venue.

However, there are some all-ages venues out there, so it just depends. It is always a good idea to check the age restrictions before purchasing your tickets.

There was a time I forgot my wallet and didn’t realize it until I was standing in front of the bouncer. It was an 18+ show to see the band Hellogoodbye.

I tried to explain that I was a decade older than the age requirement, but he didn’t budge. The moral of the story.. don’t forget your ID.

Go Fest 19 Go 96.3 Go Radio Minneapolis, Minnesota Alan Rayman X Ambassadors Wild Belle Catfish and the Bottlemen The Cabooze June 28, 2019
Credit: Sean Donohue | Echo Images

Are all music venues 21+?

No, there are some all-ages venues out there. However, most typically have an age restriction of 18+. You should be sure to check the age restrictions on the venue’s website.

What is the longest concert ever recorded?

The longest concert ever recorded was the “Marathon Concert for Peace,” which lasted a staggering 96 hours and 1 minute.

The event, which took place in Iceland in 2016, featured over 2,000 musicians performing for an audience of around 100,000. It is certainly a record that is unlikely to be broken any time soon.

According to NME, Bruce Springstein set his own personal record in 2012 with a performance that lasted for four hours and six minutes.

How much do concert tickets cost?

This can vary depending on the artist and the venue, but typically concert tickets will cost between $12 and $100.

Of course, there are always exceptions to this rule, with some tickets costing significantly more (or less). It just depends on who you are looking to see and where the concert is taking place.

Some acts like Lady Gaga or Post Malone have reached several hundred dollars for a single ticket.

You can see smaller acts perform for a lower cost because they aren’t as popular. It’s really cool to experience an artist’s intimate show before they go on to play stadiums.

I remember Billie Eilish played at 7th St. Entry in Minneapolis– one of the smallest venues in the state. Tickets were about $15, if I recall correctly.

Billie Eilish - Courtesy of Coachella, Ashley Osborn
Billie Eilish – Courtesy of Coachella, Ashley Osborn

It’s also important to buy your ticket as soon as possible, as prices may increase as tickets run out.

On the contrary, you could risk it and try to get a good deal by waiting till the last minute, as some scalpers and fans may try to sell leftover tickets before the performance date.

Make sure you’re buying from a trusted third party.

Related: Facebook Ticket Scams & How To Avoid Them

What is the shortest concert ever recorded?

The shortest concert on record lasted just 24 seconds and featured Japanese musician Nobuyuki Tsujii playing Chopin’s “Military Polonaise” at a charity event in 2009.

However, it should be noted that this was not an official concert but rather an impromptu performance.

What is the largest music venue in the world?

The largest music venue in the world is the Stade de France, which has a capacity of over 80,000 people.

The stadium, which is located in Paris, France, has hosted some of the biggest names in music, including U2, Beyonce, and Taylor Swift.

There you have it. now you know how long a concert lasts, plus other useful tips around live music. Party on, music lovers.

Written by Bo Weber

Supporting artists since 2014


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