Letter: Old Prommers have lost their shout

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Sir: Stephen Johnson ('No sound and fury', 26 August) is sadly correct about a subdued Proms; the reason is the ageing nature of the regular Prommers, mainly season ticket holders, who are responsible for most of the shouts.

Tonight, for example, of the 35 or so season ticket holders in the first couple of rows, only five are under 30. Memorable shouts require an element of guts which is lacking in the staid and now responsible regular Prommers. Similarly, welcoming a foreign orchestra in their own language loses its novelty the second or even third time around.

Why are there no younger regulars arriving each year? Probably due to the ever-increasing cost of a season ticket ( pounds 120 this year) and the need of students to work during the summer, thus preventing them from enjoying the all-important social activity of Promming: all-day queuing. There are young Prommers in the day ticket queue, but most do not Prom regularly enough to develop a rapport to generate a witty and audible shout.

We did, of course, consider a shout in response to Stephen Johnson's article, but no one could muster enough enthusiasm to do one.

Yours sincerely,

AVERIL M. HORTON

Twickenham,

Middlesex

26 August

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