30 Best Performing Arts Venues in Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe, Arizona

Las Noches de las Luminarias

Fodor's choice

Adjacent to the twinkling zoo, the Desert Botanical Garden lights up every night during Las Noches de las Luminarias, when thousands of luminarias (paper bags with lights inside) line the garden's pathways. Stroll, listen to live music, and enjoy the beauty of the desert. Tickets sell out quickly, so be sure to make a reservation for this annual event in December.

Arizona Opera

This company stages an opera season in both Tucson and Phoenix. The Phoenix season runs from October to March at Symphony Hall and the Orpheum Theatre.

Arizona State Fair

Come for classic fair fun, including a petting zoo, farm animals, and a rockin' concert stage every October.

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Arizona Theatre Company

Downtown Phoenix

Based in Tucson, the Arizona Theatre Company also performs at the Herberger Theater Center. Productions, held from September through June, range from classic dramas to musicals and new works by emerging playwrights.

ASU Gammage

Frank Lloyd Wright designed the ASU Gammage Auditorium, which presents more Broadway shows outside the Big Apple than any other venue in the nation.

ASU Kerr Cultural Center

Central Scottsdale

Theater, dance, music, and jazz performances are showcased at this center.

Ballet Arizona

The state's professional ballet company presents a full season of classical and contemporary works (including pieces commissioned for the company) in Tucson and Phoenix. The season runs from October through May.

Chandler Center for the Arts

The schedule here includes some of the nation's most popular touring performances for families and children.


The state's theater company for young audiences and families holds performances during the school year at Tempe Center for the Arts.

Crescent Ballroom

Downtown Phoenix

This small music venue only accommodates 350 people, but has a loyal following for its eclectic calendar of indie acts. The lounge is open nightly.

Great Arizona Puppet Theater

Downtown Phoenix

A yearlong cycle of inventive puppet productions is held in a historic building featuring lots of theater and exhibit space.

Indian Fair & Market

More than 700 Native American artists and artisans are showcased at the Heard Museum for this annual March event.

Marquee Theatre

This venue hosts mainly headlining rock 'n' roll entertainers.

Mesa Arts Center

This arts organization is one of the Valley's top destinations for exhibits, visual-art performances, and A-list concerts.

Ostrich Festival

The city of Chandler hosts this annual weekend of music, entertainment, and (of course) ostrich races in March.

Phoenix Symphony

Downtown Phoenix

The resident company at Symphony Hall, the Phoenix Symphony features orchestral works from classical and contemporary composers, a chamber series, composer festivals, and outdoor pops concerts. The season runs September through May.

Phoenix Theatre

North Central Phoenix

Across the courtyard from the Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix Theatre stages musical and dramatic performances.

Russo and Steele

Every January, the Russo and Steele auction features some of the most sought-after vehicles in the world.

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

Old Town

Performances at this cultural and entertainment complex typically emphasize contemporary art and artists. You might be able to catch a comical, interactive performance of the long-running Late Night Catechism, or an installation of modern dance or music. The acclaimed Scottsdale Arts Festival is held annually here in March.

Scottsdale Culinary Festival

Foodies from across the Valley mark their calendars for this outdoor weekend festival in April, which offers creations from some of the best chefs in town.

Tempe Center for the Arts

This small, architecturally interesting arts center at the edge of Tempe Town Lake has become a great source of local pride. Visual art, music, theater, and dance featuring local, regional, and international talent are showcased in a state-of-the-art, 600-seat proscenium theater, a 200-seat studio theater, and a 3,500-square-foot gallery.

The Black Theatre Troupe

Downtown Phoenix

This troupe presents original and contemporary dramas and musical revues, as well as adventurous adaptations, between September and May.

The Heard Museum World Championship Hoop Dance Contest

Every February, the Heard Museum hosts the spectacular Annual World Hoop Dance Championship, with traditional music and costumes.

The Parada del Sol Parade and Rodeo

This February horse-drawn parade and festival is an Arizona tradition featuring cowboys, cowgirls, horses, and floats.

Waste Management Phoenix Open

Formerly the Phoenix Open, this January golf tournament is the "Greatest Show on Grass."


The Phoenix Zoo celebrates the holidays each year from Thanksgiving through New Year's with ZooLights.