Shawn Mendes at Climate Pledge Arena David Conger


For many of Seattle’s renowned performance companies, September marks the start of a full season of toe-tapping dance and music concerts and engaging theater. And prior to that, countless venues throughout the city—many of them open-air—host family-friendly shows of all kinds.

By Andrew Collins
A photo of Shawn Mendes playing a concert at Climate Pledge Arena. A circle display of lights glow red above the stage. Red lights backlight the stage and performers. A catwalk stretches into the crowd.

Shawn Mendes at Climate Pledge Arena David Conger

In July, the Seattle Chamber Music Society’s famous Summer Festival showcases more than a dozen concerts at stately Benaroya Hall (200 University St)—the society also presents three outdoor performances the same month with its acclaimed Chamber Music in the Park series. Benaroya Hall is home to the sensational Seattle Symphony, which has concerts all year. The Seattle Opera stages Wagner’s beloved Das Rheingold at McCaw Hall (321 Mercer St) in August, followed by Handel’s poignant Alcina in October.

Throughout October, the Earshot Jazz Festival brings the sounds of world-class musicians to the city’s top music clubs. Other big upcoming shows include Six The Musical (July) and TINA–The Tina Turner Musical (September) at the Paramount Theatre (911 Pine St); Sam Smith (August) in concert at Climate Pledge Arena (334 First Ave N); and Taylor Swift (July) and Beyoncé (September) at Lumen Field (800 Occidental Ave S).

The Seattle Outdoor Theater Festival (1247 15th Ave E) brings more than a dozen performances by several local theater companies to stages throughout Volunteer Park during the weekend of July 8–9. For about four weeks each summer, the Seattle Shakespeare Company presents a pair of the Bard’s works in repertory at a variety of open-air venues throughout Metro Puget Sound. No tickets are required for these free performances, which are best enjoyed with a picnic. Seattle Rep (155 Mercer St) kicks off the fall with Passengers, while Disney’s The Little Mermaid and Cambodian Rock Band—which is a co-production with ACT Theatre (700 Union St)—are highlights of The 5th Avenue Theatre’s (1308 Fifth Ave) upcoming season.


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