When the weather’s right, seeing a concert outdoors is one of the warmer seasons’ many pleasures. Beyond the music, these creatively designed, legendary venues add even more to the concert-going experience.
- Gorge Amphitheater
Since opening in 1985, the Gorge Amphitheater has become known as one of the best outdoor music scenes in the world. Settled near the Columbia River with the Cascade Mountains in the background, the performance space can fit more than 20,000 visitors, many of whom stay in the nearby campground before shows.
- Crosby Theater
Surrounded by the Jemez and Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the Crosby Theatre is home to the Santa Fe Opera. The open-air theater features a stunning roof that curves to capture the “shape of the sound” and to collect rainwater, which is then stored and used for upkeep around the campus. The entire stage and mezzanine roofs span 26,616 square feet.
- Jay Pritzker Pavilion
Designed by famous architect Frank Gehry, Jay Pritzker Pavilion is a stunning installation in Chicago’s Millennium Park and features 120-foot stainless steel ribbons and crisscrossing steel pipes that stretch over the Great Lawn. With a mix of fixed seating and lawn space, more than 11,000 can attend one of the park’s concerts, many of which are free.
- Red Rocks Amphitheater
As the world’s only naturally-occurring and acoustically perfect amphitheater, Red Rocks is a must-visit for any music-lover. The amphitheater seats close to 10,000 and is located in Red Rock Park, 6,450 feet above sea level, with stunning views of the surrounding Denver area. Burnham Hoyt designed the space by balancing functionality with nature, and it officially opened in 1941.
- Starlight Theater
The Starlight Theater stands out from the rest with its unique background and combination of Broadway and concert productions. Official plans to build the Starlight kicked off in 1925, when a visit from Romania’s Queen Marie created a need for an outdoor performance venue. Construction finally began in 1949 and the theater opened with a historical review in 1950 for the city’s centennial. The space, which seats close to 8,000, has hosted touring Broadway companies, comedians, and musical guests.