Since opening its doors over 100 years ago the Usher Hall has boasted shows from the Rolling Stones and Ella Fitzgerald to Adele and Lewis Capaldi - but the real stars can be found behind the scenes.
Staff at Edinburgh’s flagship music venue are celebrating a five-star review from Scotland’s national tourism body, VisitScotland, for the tenth year in a row. The grading further cements the Usher Hall’s status as the only 5 star concert hall in Scotland.
The prestigious review follows anonymous visits from VisitScotland inspectors, who praised the Council-owned venue’s exceptional facilities, acoustics and the customer service provided by staff.
The Usher Hall sells 230,000 tickets a year and boasts another packed line up for 2020 featuring Elvis Costello, Nicola Benedetti, Goldfrapp, Jake Bugg, Elbow, Susan Boyle and of course the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
Councillor Donald Wilson, Culture and Communities Convener, said:
Once again, the Usher Hall is recognised as one of Scotland's leading arts venues. A beautiful Edwardian building with a modern twist, we know it is well loved by performers and audiences all over the world due to its magnificent acoustics.
The venue continues to exceed expectations and the year ahead is filled with rock, pop, classical, jazz, world and folk music events to look forward to. To achieve this accolade for a decade is very well deserved and is testament to the dedication of the entire culture team. They are the real stars of our Usher Hall stage.
Councillor Amy McNeese-Mechan, Culture and Communities Vice Convener, added:
Usher Hall of course is also the home of Edinburgh’s Love Music Choir, one of the biggest and best community choirs in the country! The health and wellbeing benefits of singing are well-known, so the fact that our Usher Hall staff help provide a welcoming home to such a fantastic community resource just shows how many positive benefits - invisible but invaluable - this iconic gem provides us.
Karl Chapman, General Manager of the Usher Hall, added:
We continue to welcome some of the world's greatest artists and to work hard to make sure our customer service matches the standard set on our grand stage. This continued recognition of this proves that we’re still giving our audiences a five-star experience. It’s an amazing achievement and it’s wonderful that the staff take so much pride in working at this historic venue.
Paula Ward, Regional Leadership Director at VisitScotland, said:
The Usher Hall is an iconic venue which has been home to so many memorable performances that it seems appropriate that its visitor experience should be just as memorable. To retain its five-star status for ten years is an incredible achievement and congratulations must go to the staff and management for setting such a high standard for the industry.
“Our Quality Assurance Scheme is world-leading and provides a trusted, independent and impartial source of information for visitors. It is about much more than just a star rating – it is about the entire visitor experience and investing in the business to make it as economically sustainable, and profitable, as it can be.