With a fantastic acoustic, the Kirk is used for numerous music events during the year. The Kirk hosts well-known UK organisations such as the Sixteen, Scottish Ensemble, Dunedin Consort and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Chorus.
However, the majority of our concerts are undertaken by amateur orchestras and choirs, universities and schools’ music societies. Therefore we can accommodate large and small groups as well as solo performances!
With chairs used for the audience, we are able to lay out the church to suit your needs. It is not uncommon to host a combined choir and orchestra of 150 performers. The church is unique in Edinburgh with its ability to stage a large choir below the organ in front of a good size audience.
The size of the orchestra and choir has an impact on audience capacity. This has also to be balanced with the Kirk’s maximum licenced capacity, ‘green room’ facilities, communal space for interval refreshments, circulating space and bathroom facilities.
Combination examples are:
- East end: 100 orchestra, 400 audience.
- East end: 80 choir, 60 orchestra, 350 audience.
- East end: 50 choir, 450 audience
- West end: 80 orchestra, audience 350.
- West end: 100 choir, audience 350.
- West end: 100 choir, 60 orchestra, 270 audience.
Some seats in all the combinations above will have restricted sight-lines.
For the majority of concerts, the Kirk is hired out as a venue-only facility. The Kirk does not have a box office, but tickets can be sold at the door on the day of the event. The promoter is responsible for marketing and selling tickets (if applicable). The Kirk will advertise the event on its website and our social media. Tickets for events can be sold through third parties such as ‘Eventbrite’. Also, the Usher Hall and Queens Hall have a box office facility that can be utilized for a fee.
In preparation for a concert, we will set-up staging and platforms in order to meet your statement of requirements. We will provide additional lighting for the performers. The hire charge includes a 3-hour rehearsal beforehand.
The Kirk will arrange management cover throughout the period of your hire. Volunteer stewards will also be on duty throughout the concert and their role is to man the fire exits and some of them may have completed a first aid course. We provide non-alcoholic interval refreshments if requested. At the end of the performance, we expect that performers will vacate the Kirk within 45 minutes so that our team can prepare for the next event.
Private receptions after a concert can be held subject to an additional hourly fee and prior arrangement with the Operations Manager.
The indicative scale of charges for hiring the Kirk in 2019 is here and for 2020 here. These charges are for single day hires; discounts are available for consecutive and regular bookings. All enquires for checking availability and hiring the Kirk should be made to the Operations Manager by emailing here.
The Kirk has a unique acoustic which is ideal for vocal recordings, and which is highly sought after. We have been delighted to welcome the Hebrides Ensemble and the Dunedin Consort for recording sessions.
Centrally located in the centre of a quiet Kirkyard (and therefore free of traffic noise), the Kirk is an ideal venue for recording and broadcasting – for television and radio or commercial projects.
Parking is available for outside broadcasting and equipment vehicles.
For more information, please contact the Operations Manager here.