How to prepare for a first concert


Melanie Wong

Going to a concert is a great, enjoyable way to meet new people, spend an exorbitant amount of money, and rock out to your favorite artist with a crowd of other enthusiastic fans. For those who have never been to a show or music festival before, math teacher and avid concertgoer Mr. Byrd offers some tips on how to prepare for a gig and make sure that your first-time concert experience is a memorable one.

What to Bring: First and foremost: YOUR TICKET. There will be no way to enter the show without it, unless you sneak in somehow. Other handy items include: a camera, phone, water/snacks (which should be disposed of before entering the venue), and earplugs for those with sensitive eardrums.

Arrival: Make sure to find out the exact location of the venue before departure; it could really determine how early you should leave. Expect traffic depending on how large the venue is and where it is located. Concerts at the Palace of Auburn Hills generally draw out long lines where you may have to wait 1-2 hours just to get into the parking lot.

Safety/Personal Precautions: “It all depends on what kind of show you are going to see,” Mr. Byrd said. “However, if the seating is general admission, just count on your personal space being violated at some point. Maybe some people rush to the stage. Maybe there is crowd surfing. Maybe a mosh pit opens up. Or maybe people are just dancing.”

Money: “You will most likely need $20 or so to park,” Mr. Byrd said. “Beverage prices are the same as a movie theater, so a few drinks will run you $12-$20. Concert shirts normally start around $30, and there is other swag that you can get as well (buttons, posters, hoodies, etc.).”

Attire: Check the weather a few hours, or even the day before, showtime starts. Try not to wear clothes that will be too heavy, as it gets quite hot and sweaty in the actual venue. Also, avoid wearing uncomfortable footwear (high heels are a huge NO, unless you don’t mind blisters by the end of the night); you will most likely be standing/jumping around for a few hours depending on the show.

Avoid: Don’t delegate someone to hold a spot in line for a large group of people. It’s not cool when 10 of your friends cut in line last minute when those behind have been waiting for a long time. Also, try not to bring huge signs/posters that will probably obstruct other people’s view or attempt to push your way to the front if it’s general admission seating—people will not be too fond of you. Another important thing to keep in mind is to stay hydrated; fainting at a concert is not ideal, but it does happen.

Remember: “Have a great time!” Mr. Byrd said. “Be respectful to those around you. You won’t be able to see as much as you think you would be able to.”