The Best San Francisco Entertainment – Classical, Broadway & Bars!

We know this for sure — there's a lot to choose from in a city made for fun. Think ballet, opera, symphony, theater, and legendary bars — San Francisco seem to have it all. In fact, it's one of the nation's leading cultural centers in terms of depth and range of entertainment options.

The classical music scene is alive and well with performances by the city's justly famous ballet and symphony orchestra. But SF entertainment isn't always highbrow. if you're looking for a bit of fun try Beach Blanket Babylon San Francisco, a celebrated revue that's heading into its 43th year. Better yet, cancel the trip to New York City and take in one of the best Broadway shows — now playing in San Francisco!

San Francisco Ballet

San Francisco Ballet

The popular San Francisco Ballet Company has been around since 1933. In fact, it was the first professional company in the nation. The season starts in January and continues on until May, and then resumes with their classic rendition of Cinderella during the holiday season.

Find out what's playing and, more importantly, how to book tickets online before you leave home.

San Francisco Opera

SF Opera

Like ballet, opera has been an important cultural icon on the San Francisco entertainment scene since it was founded in 1923.

Performed in the magnificent War Memorial Opera House since 1932, the SF Opera boasts almost 80 performances per year. In our article we preview this season's performances and discuss how best to buy tickets.

San Francisco Symphony

San Francisco Symphony

The SF Symphony rocks as well as charms, soothes, and excites. With Michael Tilson Thomas at the helm, the symphony has garnered many, many Grammy awards for classical music. But the big surprise is that they even have a Grammy award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance in collaboration with Metallica. Yes, that Metallica!

You can see the SF Symphony perform the best of the classical repertoire at the Davies Symphony Hall often with guest performers such as Itzhak Perlman, Diana Drall, and international superstar pianist Yuja Wang. We'll show you how to find tickets.

Davies Symphony Hall

Davies Symphony Hall In San Francisco

As we said, the home of the SF Symphony is the Davies Symphony Hall, located in the Civic Center. The Davies is an impressive performance venue and it's worth going to a symphony just to get inside.

There are other types of perfromances at the Davies Symphony Hall as well. You can attend presentations by the likes of Bill Maher and Neil deGrasse Tyson or hear popular musicians like Sara Hicks or Burt Bacharach perform with the orchestra. We'll tel you about that and share interesting tidbits about the hall.

San Francisco Theatre – The Best of Broadway

The Best of Broadway

You don't need to travel all the way across the country to see the best the Broadway has to offer.

That's because the shows come to you in San Francisco, and there's always something fabulous playing. In 2017, for instance, you can take in smash musicals Jersey Boys, Wicked, Cabaret, An Act of God, and Beautiful: The Carol King Story. Check out of reviews and ticket-buying advice.

The Orpheum Theatre, San Francisco

Orpheum Theatre

The Orpheum Theatre is a designated San Francisco Historical Landmark and a wonderful place to see those big, popular Broadway productions like Wicked, Mama Mia, The Lion King, and in 2017, Hamilton.

To find out more about the Orpheum and what's playing when you're in San Francisco, read our guide where we also tell you how to get there, where to park, where to eat nearby, and even the best hotels in Orpheum neighborhood.

SF Playhouse

SF Playhouse

Lodged in an historic building that once was the local Elks Lodge (get it?), SF Playhouse is known for its eclectic mix of plays — from popular musicals to quirky premiers — and for its community involvement in introducing theater to young people in the Bay Area. Find out more and what's playing this season.

Beach Blanket Babylon

Beach Blanket Babylon

It's the world's longest-running musical!

Since 1974 audiences have loved the satirical story of Snow White as she pokes fun at current celebrities and politicians. The current crop of celebrities run the gamut from Lady Gaga to the Obamas. This theater event is such a city institution that there's even a street named after it!

San Francisco Bars

San Francisco Bars

Looking for a place to go for a drink or after the performance? If you're in San Francisco the world is your oyster (bar!).

From classic to contemporary, San Francisco has a bar to suit your mood. We review our fave San Francisco bars and let you in on where to find the bars that served Brad Pitt, Bob Dylan, Elizabeth Taylor, Jack Kerouac, and even Dylan Thomas. Did we mention Tony Bennett?

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