- A record-breaking season online, with more than double the number of signed-in accounts accessing BBC Proms content on iPlayer and BBC Sounds compared to last year
- Nearly 1 million people watched the First Night of the Proms on BBC Two, its strongest overnight TV audience since 2009
- Proms content reached 3.2 million on TV during the opening weekend
- A peak audience of 3.5 million people watched the Last Night of the Proms on BBC One
- Well over half the Proms at the Royal Albert Hall have been total sell-outs
- Average main evening attendance at the Hall was 93%, building on 85% in 2019
The BBC Proms 2023 came to a close on Saturday, with the celebratory Last Night of the Proms rounding off a season that included Sir Simon Rattle’s final concerts as Music Director of the LSO; a full concert staging of Berlioz’s epic opera The Trojans – the first in the UK for more than ten years; the first ever weekend-long Proms festival at Sage Gateshead, in collaboration with the Royal Northern Sinfonia and opened by Self Esteem; orchestral celebrations of Northern Soul and Bollywood; and music from Rufus Wainwright, Jon Hopkins and the first ever Fado Prom with Portuguese star, Mariza.
The BBC Orchestras and Choirs performed in 32 Proms, more than one third of the total concerts performed. The BBC Singers performed in five Proms: the First Night and the Last Night, with Sir Simon Rattle and Jon Hopkins and in their own Late Night Prom showcasing their huge range of repertoire.
Audiences flocked to the Royal Albert Hall with well over half the main evening concerts selling out and an average audience attendance across the season at the Hall of 93%. This is up 7% on pre-pandemic levels in 2019. More than 70,000 Prommers, who stood in either the arena or gallery of the Royal Albert hall, were welcomed across the season.
Nearly half (47%) of audiences at the Royal Albert Hall were attending a Prom for the first time. The Proms also partnered with TikTok to relaunch their classical music hashtag, and Proms videos have been viewed more than 1 million times on the platform, which is primarily used by people aged 18 to 34. Across the BBC’s social media channels, Proms content has been viewed more than 5 million times.
Sam Jackson, Controller of Radio 3 said: ‘This has been a fantastic year for the Proms, and demonstrates the country’s appetite for classical music from the BBC. In multiple ways, audiences are higher than pre-pandemic figures, and I’m particularly pleased to see so many young people coming to classical music, often for the very first time. As ever, every BBC Prom has been broadcast live on Radio 3, and a wealth of Proms content is now available on BBC Sounds. Work now begins to deliver another brilliant season in 2024; we look forward to revealing more next April.’
Suzy Klein, Head of Arts and Classical Music TV said: ‘Television audiences across this year’s Proms are their strongest in years, and I’m delighted that major moments in the cultural calendar, such as the First Night and the Last Night, are reaching so many millions of people. I’d like to thank our TV teams for their superlative work in continuing to create ‘gold-standard’ concert coverage – watched globally, and the envy of the world. And a big thank you to all our presenters across the season, who have done an incredible job on TV and radio alike, sharing their musical passion, knowledge and enthusiasm. As the home of classical on TV, the BBC continues to showcase the very best in classical music throughout the year, ranging from BBC Young Musician and Cardiff Singer of the World to Inside Classical, operas, ballet and award-winning documentaries – and we hope audiences continue to enjoy the rich classical offerings still to come on BBC TV’.