Roy Thomson Hall is home to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) and a premier venue for gala screenings of the Toronto International Film Festival. It opened in 1982 and underwent major work in 2002 to enhance the acoustical performance of the auditorium, among other improvements. The hall seats 2630 on three levels, with wheelchair seating available on every level. The TSO has a TSOUNDCHECK program for those aged 15 – 35 and regularly offers last-minute seat sales and promotions.
- Row F in the left and right parterres can accommodate a total of eight people in wheelchairs.
“General Comment. (TSO) The main floor has a gentle rake, so may not be ideal for those who are shorter. And sitting closer to the stage and to one section of the orchestra can impact the sound quality, as you will generally hear that section of instruments more loudly.”
“Section L1, Row L, Seat 7. (TSO) This seat put me slightly above eye-level with the stage. As a result, I could only clearly see the conductor and the row of musicians sitting closest to the edge of the stage. Great seats if there’s a soloist, but not if you enjoy a clear view of all the musicians. Due to the gentle rise of the seating in this section, it is entirely possible that your view will be partially obstructed by people sitting in front of you if you are short and/or they are tall. However, being in the last row in the section and having an open space at the end of the row (beside seat 6) makes this seat feel more open than some and the legroom is good. For the $30 I paid during a seat sale, a substantial saving, this seat provided good value.”
- Accessible locations in several sections on this level can accommodate a total of 16 people in wheelchairs.
“Section C2, Row G, Seat 3. Bernstein’s Candide (TSO) This seat offered an excellent, fairly central view of the entire stage and was close enough that I could see the performers’ facial expressions. The section is well-raked so even as a woman of average height, my view was never obstructed. G3 has the added benefit of being an aisle seat, making it easy to exit quickly after the bows have finished and/or to make a run for the washrooms at intermission. Because Candide is an operetta, lyrics were displayed on two screens above the stage, both of which I could see perfectly. I would recommend this seat regardless, but at the Soundcheck price I paid for my ticket ($19) it felt like an absolute steal!”
- Row H in sections C6 and C8 can accommodate a total of six people in wheelchairs.
“General Comment. (TSO) Moving any further to the side of sections C6-8 means that parts of the stage will start to be cut off from your view. L and R sections 9 are ideal if you want to be close enough to see musicians but still be in front of the stage. L and R sections 8 are mostly parallel to the front of the stage, and sections L and R 7 are opposite the back half of the stage.”
“General Comment. (TSO) The rake in the balcony sections is good, so your view is generally not obstructed by those in front of you, although the bottom of your view may be obstructed in the first row of the balcony by the safety railing if you are shorter.”
“General Comment. (TSO) Access to the washrooms from the balcony level is worthy of a comment (or perhaps a whole page of comments) of its own. To say it is a challenge to access the washrooms during the time frame of a normal intermission is an understatement. If possible, plan to visit before or after the performance. If you do choose to visit at intermission, being prepared to leap from your seat, climb over the people beside you and rush to join the queue as quickly as possible is essential. Women and men alike gather from both sides of the floor to form a mob that will eventually filter into a single-file line down the right-hand side of a staircase to washrooms on the floor below; the lucky people who beat you there will be coming back upstairs on the other side.”
“Section C9, Row B, Seat 10. The Lord of the Rings (TSO) An excellent seat for enjoying a film presentation by the TSO. Great view.”
“Section C5, Row E, Seat 3. The Lord of the Rings (TSO) I wouldn’t want to be any farther left than this section or risk cutting off some of the movie screen, but as a cheaper Soundcheck (TSO’s program for people aged 15-35) ticket, this was a great and affordable seat for an excellent show.”
“Section L9, Row A, Seat 6. What Makes it Great: Mozart Clarinet Concerto (TSO) I like to sit close to the stage for this series, which includes an explanation/demonstration of the piece before it is performed, in order to see the conductor/lecturer and the various sections of the orchestra that are highlighted during the talk. This seat is almost in line with the front of the stage and had a good view of the clarinet soloist, the cellos, basses and violas, and the backs of the first violins, but I couldn’t see most of the left half of the stage. At 5’5″, I found that the safety railing partially blocked my view, including of the conductor, and I had to lean forward a bit for a clear view. Still, this seat was a good value for the $37.50 cost.”