Performing Arts in Louisvilleflickr/Kaizen
The Louisville Fund for the Arts, started in 1949 to provide financial assistance to theater, art, music and dance, was the first of its kind in the United States. It now supports more than 12 organizations. An example of the city's enthusiasm for the arts is evident at the Riverfront Plaza and Belvedere, home to The Kentucky Center.
Places to Go
The Tony Award-winning Actors Theatre of Louisville, (502) 584-1205, is in a complex at 316 W. Main St. that includes three theaters: the Victor Jory, a converted Victorian warehouse; the Pamela Brown, a modern auditorium-style structure; and the 316-seat-in-the-round Bingham Theatre. This resident professional troupe performs September to May. Their annual Humana Festival of New American Plays draws international attention and is held late March through early April.
Kentucky Opera; Louisville Ballet; and Stage One: The Louisville Children's Theatre perform at The Kentucky Center. The opera, (502) 584-4500, presents works September through February, and the ballet, (502) 583-3150, performs September through April. Stage One presents plays for children September through May; phone (502) 589-4060. Repertory dance troupes and theatrical and musical companies from throughout the country also are drawn to the center and are fun things for couples to do.
The Little Colonel Players, (502) 241-9906, the area's oldest community theater, stages its productions in Pewee Valley, while the Derby Dinner Playhouse, in nearby Jeffersonville, Ind., (812) 288-8281, offers Broadway plays and a buffet dinner in a theater-in-the-round setting.
The free Kentucky Shakespeare Festival performances from mid-June through July are a must; phone (502) 574-9900. Enjoy a picnic in the park, then stroll over to the Ramey Amphitheatre at Fourth Street between Park and Magnolia. Other summer highlights are the musicals, movies and other things to see at the Iroquois Amphitheater in Iroquois Park; phone (502) 368-5865.
Though classic films are a given, The Louisville Palace (625 S. 4th St.) also features an assortment of live entertainment and special engagements inside the historic 1928 theater; phone (502) 583-4555.
Concerts in Louisville
The Louisville Orchestra, (502) 587-8681, performs September through May at The Kentucky Center. Louisville also invests in the musical talents of its young people through the Louisville Youth Orchestra, which performs at various locations; phone (502) 896-1851. The Mercury Ballroom, 622 S. 4th St., is a venue for concerts and shows; phone (502) 583-4555.
The Chamber Music Society sponsors concerts by international artists at the University of Louisville's School of Music; phone (502) 852-6907.
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