One of the best ways to explore different parts of LA and get a sense of what the city has to offer is by going to see shows at various performance venues around town. Of course, LA is a huge entertainment hub, so the scope and feel of these venues varies from small, intimate stages to full-blown arenas. Here are some favorites:
The Hollywood Bowl
The Hollywood Bowl is one of the most iconic performance venues in LA. This bowl-shaped amphitheater is a great place to enjoy an outdoor concert. It’s a little on the larger side with a capacity of about 17,000. Various USC programs, including the University Residential College at Birnkrant, often organize trips to see performances here!
The Pantages Theatre
The Pantages Theatre at Hollywood and Vine is the place to see all of the popular Broadway shows when they come into town. It was built in the 30s and has a fun Old Hollywood vibe, so it really makes for an experience that’s different than our day-to-day as college students.
Nokia Theatre is part of the vibrant part of Downtown LA known as LA Live. In addition to holding concerts, it’s also a popular location for awards shows like the Emmys. Being just two metro stops away from USC, Nokia is a great place to see a concert or even a comedy show.
The El Rey Theatre
The El Rey is a smaller, more personal concert venue located in the Mid-Wilshire area of Los Angeles. It only holds about 700 and is mostly general admission, so this is definitely your place if you like smaller indie bands or up and coming artists.
These are only a few of the popular concert venues – for other ideas, check out these honorable mentions: The Greek Amphitheater, The Wiltern, Walt Disney Concert Hall, The Palladium, and the House of Blues.