I hear it all the time. "There's nothing to do in Phoenix" and " There is no culture in Phoenix." Well, I beg to differ. Maybe people who say these things just aren't looking in the right places!
The Greater Phoenix area is one of the largest metro areas in the country, and, as such, is a prime destination for professional performances. Nationally and internationally acclaimed bands and performers sell out our venues all year long. Some of our largest venues are in downtown Phoenix, but there are others in Scottsdale, Mesa, Tempe, Chandler, Peoria and even Wickenburg!
Aside from touring performers, our area is also fortunate to have professional entertainment organizations that call the Valley of the Sun home. Those include the Phoenix Symphony, Arizona Opera, and Ballet Arizona, to name a few.
These calendars are extensive, but there are even more community theater and youth theater performances all over the Greater Phoenix area during the year. To accommodate those programs, I also provide a weekly roundup in addition to these major monthly calendars. You can check here to find out what's happening this week and this weekend in the Phoenix area.
I do not include festivals, art walks, holiday events, conventions or other annual happenings in this calendar. You can find those events in the monthly calendar listings of things to do and see around town.
January is one of the high season months in the Valley of the Sun. Our winter visitors are here and tourism is at its peak.
February is also a high season month, when our part-time residents are still enjoying not having to shovel snow from the driveway, and all the locals have had a parade of relatives and old friends come to visit to enjoy the sunshine. There aren't many bargains at resorts here in February. This month you are certain to find some opportunities for Valentine's Day entertainment.
Many activities will move outdoors in March. You'll still find that all the professional performing arts organizations have performances in March, including some St. Patrick's Day concerts.
April is a month of transition. The winter visitors start to leave, but the kids are still in school. Some theatre and musical organizations start winding down their season in April, so this may be your last chance for a few months. Touring bands come all year long, so that's not a problem!
May Concert and Shows Calendar
In May people here start to sweat. The half-year residents pack up their homes and head out of town. Many arts organizations go on hiatus for the summer months. Touring bands come all year long, so that's not a problem!
June definitely slows down. Not too many outdoor concerts are scheduled in June. While June through September sees a slowdown in opera, ballet and orchestral performances, touring bands don't slow their pace. In the summer, people here seem desperate to get out of the house! Most performances are in the evening. You can check this regular calendar, or, if you are only interested in singers/bands, you can check the special Summer Concert Guide.
July Concert and Shows Calendar
Many activities in July revolve around pools, splash pads and water parks in July, but there is still a good variety of evening performances that you can attend. You can check this regular calendar, or, if you are only interested in singers/bands, you can check the special Summer Concert Guide.
August is still hot in the desert. Many kids go back to school in August.
You would think that in the dog days of summer the only concerts would be held indoors, in air-conditioned comfort. We actually have one outdoor amphitheater that's busy with famous bands all summer! You can check this regular calendar that includes some theater and other performances at major venues around town, or, if you are only interested in singers/bands, you can check the special Summer Concert Guide.
Check the calendar to see which bands, plays and other performances are scheduled in August.
September Concert and Shows Calendar
September marks a return to double digit temperatures from the triple digits of the last three months. Some theatre, dance and music organizations begin their season in September. You can check this regular calendar that includes some theater and other performances at major venues around town, or, if you are only interested in singers/bands, you can check the special Summer Concert Guide.
Finally! Fall! The winter visitors have arrived and the outdoor activities are in full swing. Theatre companies and music and dance organizations that didn't start their season in September will surely have their first performances in October.
The holiday season begins in earnest in November, and even before Thanksgiving you'll find Christmas holiday concerts and shows to help get you in a jolly mood. You'll probably have to drive north to see much autumn leaves color action, though!
It's been a busy year, but December kicks into high gear for the holidays.
Check the calendar to see which bands, plays and other performances are scheduled in December. For other festive activities and musical performances that might take place in smaller venues around town, check the Big Phoenix Holiday Guide.
You can also check out the local FM radio stations for the ride back home after the show.