Dance, Theater, and Music

The 5th Avenue Theatre
“The venerable 5th puts on traveling Broadway shows (Jersey Boys) and produces in-house shows that have gone on to Broadway (Hairspray).—Chris Clayton, arts and culture editor, Seattle Magazine. Musicals in an ornate 1926 theater; located downtown. Tickets from $20. 1308 Fifth Avenue; tel. +1 206 625 1900.

Seattle Opera
“Full-blown productions of classic and newer works, with internationally respected singers.”—Misha Berson, theater and arts critic, Seattle Times. Performances in the 2003 Marion Oliver McCaw Hall at Seattle Center. Tickets from $25. 321 Mercer Street; tel. +1 206 389 7676.

Pacific Northwest Ballet
“The forward-thinking director, Peter Boal, does a masterful job.”—Chris Clayton. Classic and contemporary ballet, from the annual Nutcracker to works by George Balanchine; performances in Marion Oliver McCaw Hall. Tickets from $20. 321 Mercer Street; tel. +1 206 441 2424.

Seattle Symphony
“A highly regarded symphony orchestra under the baton of Gerard Schwarz.”—Misha Berson. Performs a wide range of works in the acoustically excellent Benaroya Hall. Tickets from $20. 200 University Street; tel. +1 206 215 4747.

Winner of the 2006 Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, “led by hot Broadway directing veteran Bartlett Sher.”—Misha Berson. Presents classics and premieres, including the award-winning The Light in the Piazza. Performances at the INTIMAN Playhouse at Seattle Center. Tickets from $10. 201 Mercer Street; tel. +1 206 269 1900.

On the Boards
“Experimental dance, theater, music, and performance art from the Pacific Northwest and around the world.”—Misha Berson. Shows at the Merrill Wright Mainstage Theater; located in lower Queen Anne. Tickets from $18. 100 W. Roy Street; tel. +1 206 217 9888.


“The bigwig on the alternative scene.”—J. D. Dickey, author, The Rough Guide to Seattle. Hosting musicians since 1939 (Duke Ellington to Pearl Jam), current performances range from national alternative rockers to local bands; located downtown. Plus, “the wacky interior looks like the inside of a walnut.”—Chris Clayton, arts and culture editor, Seattle Magazine. Tickets from $12. 1426 First Avenue; tel. +1 206 628 3151.

Chop Suey
“A wild mix of music, from rock to live hip-hop to DJs.”—Tom Scanlon. Over-the-top Asian-theme decor; small performance venue in Capitol Hill. Tickets from $5. 1325 E Madison Street; tel. +1 206 324 8000.

Triple Door
“From experimental DJs to folk, roots-rock, and blues performers, this is a terrific venue.”—J. D. Dickey. Upscale dinner-club with shared half-moon booths; Musicquarium lounge with happy-hour concerts; located downtown. Tickets from $15. 216 Union Street; tel. +1 206 838 4333.

Tractor Tavern
“Lands top-notch touring alt-country bands and rowdy rock/country bands from the local scene.”—Tom Scanlon. Barn-like performance venue with farm-inspired decor; located in Ballard. Tickets from $6. 5213 Ballard Avenue NW; tel. +1 206 789 3599.


July-early August. Annual citywide event with hydroplane boat races, air shows, parades, fireworks, and concerts. Tip: Don’t miss the quirky milk carton derby, with more than 60 handcrafted boats. tel. +1 206 728 0123.

Labor Day weekend. The largest urban arts and music festival in the U.S. with more than 100 concerts by national headliners and local bands; held at Seattle Center. Tip: Skip lines and fees by purchasing tickets at local Starbucks starting in early August. tel. +1 206 281 7788.

Northwest Folklife
Memorial Day weekend. Free annual festival at Seattle Center with regional food, exhibits, and performances of dance, theater, and storytelling. Tip: Take a free dance class at Center House. tel. +1 206 684 7300.

International Film Festival
Late May-early June. Annual 25-day showcase of more than 400 movies from around the world; special events with actors and directors. tel. +1 206 324 9996.


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