Built in 1922, The Castro Theatre is San Francisco's only remaining movie palace. When it's not hosting film festivals, this 1400-seat house runs a repertory calendar heavy on film classics; there is no better place to see The Wizard of Oz. The interior reflects the elegance of a bygone era with its red velvet seats and walls that feature molded plaster and fresco detailing. The fanciful ceiling, from which an imposing art deco chandelier hangs, is designed to evoke the interior of a Bedouin tent. A mighty Wurlitzer organ plays between evening shows and completes the antique feel of the theater.
An architectural masterpiece, The Fillmore itself is as worth seeing as any band that plays here. Stand on the main floor next to the historic stage and look up at soaring ceilings, embellished with carvings and gold paint, while the booming speakers rattle your bones. If you choose the tranquility of the balcony instead, sink into velvet-covered seats, sip cocktails, and eat French fries. With posters representing almost every group that has ever played here, the history of American music is on full display.
Get tickets in advance for shows at the Great American Music Hall because even though it's a big venue, sell-outs are common. All ages can enjoy the music in this historic venue, with talent spanning the entire spectrum from punk to country, famous to unknown, local to international. Jonathan Richman, Nick Lowe, Boss Hogg, !!!, the Ponys, and the Dirtbombs are just a few of the acts to have graced this hallowed stage. Watch from rows, tables, balcony seats, or the stage-level dance floor. The ornate gold and red velvet curtains are a throwback to the Barbary Coast days. The venue serves food and drinks to the large crowds.
The retro luxuriousness of Bimbo's 365 Club's interior adds unexpected character to the venue. A wide variety of artists perform here, from local talent to major-label superstars on international tours. Past headliners have included the Detroit Cobras, the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, They Might Be Giants, Seu Jorge, Aimee Mann and the Flaming Lips. Weekly Wing nights fill the floor with Charleston-ing zoot-suiters, accentuating the original plush crimson curtains of Bimbo's 1931 opening.
Constructed as a temporary attraction for the 1915 Pan-Pacific International Exhibition, Palace of Fine Arts continues to enchant the city. The original plaster, which made up the monument's exterior, has been gradually replaced, with funds raised by the Marina's residents who wanted to preserve a graceful part of their landscape. Swans in the adjoining lagoon glide by the soaring ocher-tinted colonnades and the imposing dome rigged with panels of centaurs and warriors. Stroll inside the dome and marvel at the uncanny acoustics, then enjoy a picnic lunch on one of the park benches to provide an unparalleled view of this gem.
Situated nicely on the courtyard of Fisherman's Wharf, Cobb's features nightly lineups of talented comedians. Both tourists and locals are found here, laughing themselves to tears. Wednesday's three-hour "All-Pro Showcase" has 14 comics, featuring well-known, occasionally famous, acts. Previous performers include Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld, Rob Schneider and Kathy Griffin. It can get expensive with a cover and a two-drink minimum, but can you really put a price on joy and laughter?
The academic dimension of music is explored in this prominent music school that is an active part of the cultural psyche of San Francisco. San Francisco Conservatory of Music has a handful of talented students graduating every year. With highly informed faculties and most modern instrumental facilities, this unique institution attracts a lot of serious music lovers. The place provides a top quality acoustical environment that is magically enriching for sound creation. With three state-of-the-art concert halls and superlative supportive facilities, the place is a preferred venue for a range of major musical events and other similar gatherings.
Featuring performances from a diverse range of professional artists and bands from across the world, SFJAZZ Center is a modern concert venue in San Francisco. Located on the corner of Fell Street and Franklin Street, the center comprises the flexible Robert N. Miner Auditorium which has a capacity to host a maximum of 700 spectators, a smaller 80-seat rehearsal room and a cafe. The auditorium is equipped with latest infrastructure amenities where spectators can sit back, relax and watch the scintillating performances on stage.
The pride of the SFJAZZ Center, Robert N. Miner Auditorium is built just for jazz performances, with its classy ambiance, intimate seating areas, and softly-tuned acoustics. Its steeply-positioned seats make for amazing viewing experiences.
Clad in glass from two sides, Joe Henderson Lab is a chic, light and airy space which is best suited for corporate events, concerts and receptions. This compact room is named after the famed jazz saxophonist Joe Henderson, and comes with its own state-of-the-art sound system 'Meyer', excellent stage lighting as well as video equipment. Perched delightfully on the stage is a sleek piano, which often catches the fancy of the audience. Along with seats, the room has a standing capacity of up to 100 people.
Conveniently located in the San Francisco Performing Arts District, the Sydney Goldstein Theater, formerly Nourse Theater, is a historic landmark in itself, apart from being an entertainment venue. Built in the year 1926, the theater plays host to stand up comedy, plays, concerts and is mostly renowned for lecture series by City Arts & Lectures. Constructed in Spanish Revival style, the bright red awnings and classical decor adds a traditional charm to the venue. Ornate chandeliers shed light on the bright red seats and a proscenium stage with bright red curtains. All these elements lend themselves nicely to a classical concert or a period drama. Renamed after Sydney Goldstein, the theater is a cultural symbol of San Francisco.