Treat yourself to an evening out at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. Whether you love the pageantry and originality of musical theater, the physicality of dance, the complex tones of the symphony, or the visual delight of art, you will find events to delight you at North Carolina’s largest entertainment complex. With six theaters in three venues, there is always something going on! Annually there are more than 1,000 events to choose from in downtown Charlotte.
Blumenthal Performing Arts Center
The Blumenthal Performing Arts Center began as an idea in a consultant’s report in 1975. Monies were raised through an allocation from the State of North Carolina, a bond approved by the citizens of Charlotte, and private donations. The Belk Brothers company donated the land where the center resides. As a result, the main theater is named after them. The Center is named after the largest private donor, the Blumenthal Foundation.
The three theaters are located at the corner of 5th Street and North Tryon Street in downtown Charlotte.
The Belk Theater is the largest venue in the Performing Center, seating 2,118 in a contemporary horseshoe seating arrangement. It is the home of the PNC Broadway Lights Series, which welcomes the most recent national touring companies of Broadway shows. You will also see headliners, awards shows, and popular concerts by the Charlotte Symphony.
The Booth Playhouse is a smaller venue, with 434 seats at two levels. It is a courtyard-style proscenium theater capable of cabaret and theater-in-the-round performances. The Booth hosts dance, choral, and other musical ensembles.
Stage Door Theater
The Stage Door Theater is a black-box-style theater that can house up to 233 people in varying configurations. The size and style create the most intimate experience between the audience and the performer. Look for jazz performances and those that require audience participation.
Levine Center for the Arts
The second campus under the purview of the Blumenthal Center of the Performing Arts is the Levine Center for the Arts. The Levine Center is a four-building complex housing the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, the Mint Museum, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture, the Knight Theater, and two outdoor venues.
The Knight Theater is a proscenium theater with seating for 1192. Their schedule includes many Charlotte Symphony concerts and current artists such as Melissa Etheridge and Los Lobos.
Levine Plaza is located at 430 South Tryon. It is used for free concerts and events and was part of the recent Charlotte International Arts Festival. The Charlotte Jazz Festival (suspended following COVID) had many activities in this space.
The Tent at Romare Beardon Park
The tent at Romare Beardon Park is the newest venue, set up for festivals at the Levine Center. There are cabaret and theater seating, if you are lucky, and standing room, if you aren’t.
Located at 2700 E Independence Blvd, the Ovens was the first Civic Auditorium in Charlotte. Built in 1955, it is still the largest venue in the city, with a seating capacity of 2,455. Over the years, the Ovens Auditorium has heard the voices of such legendary stars as Elvis, Diana Ross, Louis Armstrong, and Carol Burnett.
Charlotte International Arts Festival
2022 launched the inaugural Charlotte International Arts Festival, which took place in all of the Blumenthal venues, plus other parks and areas across Charlotte. Over two weeks at the end of September, there were over 200 various attractions. The CIAF is scheduled to return annually!
Tickets and Parking
A full list of events and ticket information for all upcoming shows is available on the Blumenthal Performing Arts website. Parking for performances at the Blumenthal can be pre-paid online and used at the Bank of America Corporate Parking. Parking for shows at the Levine is available at the Levine Center for the Arts Parking Garage with an entrance on West Brooklyn Village Avenue. The cost is $5 (cash only) after 5 pm on weekdays, with no time restriction on the weekend.
Plan Your Theater Getaway
There is no need to go to NYC for a Broadway show — we have them here in North Carolina! Enjoy Symphony, Opera, Theater, or Dance at a Blumenthal Performing Arts Center venue without the big city hassles. The charming town of Davidson is only a 30-minute drive from downtown Charlotte, so you can enjoy your show and then relax in our small-town ambiance.
Whether you live in the area or are coming to town for a show, we would love to have you stay with us at Davidson Village Inn. Because our Davidson B&B offers 18 rooms and a full breakfast buffet each morning, it’s the perfect spot for a night’s stay. If you have never been to Davidson on a getaway, download the Davidson, NC Vacation Guide. In addition to being free, this guide is a great way to navigate your way through the town and fill you in on all the hotspots only the locals know about. With tips on where to eat, where to shop, and what to do while you’re here, you’ll probably want to visit Davidson every season. Book your room or call us with any questions.
Updated May 2023