The Arts & Music Scene

Music lovers enjoy big-name shows as well as local talent, like the Dave Matthews Band, at the John Paul Jones Arena, the Charlottesville Pavilion and the Paramount Theatre. In addition to theatre troupes, the Historic Downtown Mall is home to music venues like the The Southern, The Jefferson Theater, Live Arts Theatre, UVA’s Summer Heritage Theatre Festival, Play On!, and the nearby American Shakespeare Theatre. Don't miss Artwalk on the first Friday of every month, inviting art lovers to browse galleries and exhibits. Be sure to visit the following arts and music venues on your next trip to Charlottesville.

American Shakespeare Center

The American Shakespeare Center rediscovers the joys and accessibility of Shakespeare's theatre, language and humanity by exploring the English Renaissance stage and its practices through performance and education. The ASC's Blackfriars Playhouse, the world's only re-creation of Shakespeare's indoor theatre, is open year-round for Shakespeare productions, which have been hailed by The Washington Post as "shamelessly entertaining" and by The Boston Globe as "phenomenal... bursting with energy." Founded in 1988 as Shenandoah Shakespeare Express, the organization became the American Shakespeare Center in 2005.


Ash Lawn Opera

For over 33 years, the Ash Lawn Opera Festival has been providing the Charlottesville area with high-level summer performances of operas and musicals, as well as free education and outreach programs. The 2013 season includes Puccini's "La boheme," as well as "Carousel" by Rodgers and Hammerstein. 


Charlottesville nTelos Wireless Pavilion

Located on the east end of the Historic Downtown Mall, the Charlottesville nTelos Wireless Pavilion is the city's premier outdoor venue for live performance. Open since July of 2005, it features premium seating, a spacious lawn, and professional stage and sound, all within easy walking distance of downtown Charlottesville's many restaurants and other attractions. The Charlottesville nTelos Wireless Pavilion presents acclaimed live musical acts and is host to the Friday's After Five free concert series from April through September.


Four County Players

Founded in 1973, Four County Players is Central Virginia's longest continuously operating community theater. For more than 35 years, the players have delighted audiences with a full range of theater experiences. Located in the small town of Barboursville, the theater is the cultural hub for the community, serving as both an artistic and educational center. The Players are well known for their masterful musicals, hilarious comedies and magical productions of Shakespeare. Every year, Four County Players presents five main stage shows. These productions include at least one musical, a Shakespeare play and a family Christmas show.


Paramount Theater

Built in 1931, Charlottesville's Paramount Theater has held a starring role both now and in the past. Once a home for movies and community events, The Paramount's doors were closed for thirty years before recent restoration returned the theater's former glory. The Paramount Theater boasts 1,040 seats in a hall with excellent sight lines and acoustics. The Paramount's state-of-the-art facility provides a wonderful opportunity to see world-class artists perform in an intimate setting. Located on Charlottesville's Downtown Mall, the Paramount Theater hosts a variety of music, dance, drama, Broadway, comedy and family performances each season.


The Southern Cafe & Music Hall

Live music on the Downtown Mall! Check our website for upcoming shows.