Students can rehearse and perform in these beautiful Mountain West spaces.

Practicing and playing in a familiar classroom is nothing compared to the thrill of performing in a new environment in front of a live audience. Give your students a trip to the Rocky Mountains and the experience of a lifetime when they visit these music venues.

As a part of the University of Colorado Boulder, the Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre is a small outdoor theater in the heart of the university. Named after the first female professor at the University, the theater has been holding plays and other performances since 1944. This is also the main stage where they perform their “Colorado Shakespeare Festival” performances, where every summer they host a multitude of classic Shakespeare plays.

The Bluebird Theater in Denver has undergone many changes and renovations since its opening in 1913. Originally named after John Thompson, a prominent businessman in Denver at the time, it renamed itself Bluebird Theater in 1922. It was originally a movie house, and it slowly adapted and became the music theater it is today.

Bluebird Theater, Credit: AEG

Bluebird Theater, Credit: AEG

Arguably one of the most famous theater venues in the United States, the Red Rocks Amphitheatre venue takes “mountain theater” to a new level. The theater sits in a “transitional zone” where the Rocky Mountains meet the Great Plains. It is the only naturally occurring amphitheater in the world. With over 738 acres of land, this amphitheater offers a completely unique experience.

As part of the University of Utah, Kingsbury Hall has been an integral part of the institution since 1930. One of its most famous programs is called “UtahPresents.” It is a multi-disciplinary program that “brings diverse artistic and cultural experiences to campus and the region.” By having this program, the University commits to hosting a variety of diverse events through the creative arts to help educate its people.

The Tuacahn Center for the Arts in Ivins, Utah is another beautiful outdoor theater that premiered its first performance in 1995. Since then, it has produced over 60 original musical theater productions as well as Broadway shows. In addition to hosting shows, the Tuacahn High School for the Performing Arts opened in 1999 as the first public charter school in the state of Utah. They both have a mission to teach students and locals the importance of the arts and creativity.

Credit: Tuacahn Center for the Arts

Credit: Tuacahn Center for the Arts

Built as the home for the Utah Symphony Orchestra in 1979, Abravanel Hall in Salt Lake City has become an icon in the heart of Salt Lake City. And all that glitters is really gold in this hall, where it shows off gold-leaf covered staircases, balconies and tiers. It also holds a 27-foot-tall blown glass sculpture by artist Dale Chihuly. Students can visit the hall for one of its many performances throughout the year, or rent the stage to host their own.

Other Mountain West states with student-friendly performing arts venues include Montana. Opening in 1931, the Alberta Baair Theater in Billings boasts beautiful chandeliers and an Art Deco design. It is the largest fully equipped performance studio in the Billings area. It hosts a variety of professional performance groups as well as many student-based performances throughout the year. It is committed to teaching children about the arts and provides over 20,000 students access to their programs annually.

Founded in 1973, the National Music Museum in Vermillion, South Dakota has been recognized as the “Musical Smithsonian” of South Dakota. This museum features over 15,000 fine instruments from many different cultures and historical periods. The museum is currently undergoing an expansion and renovation, and it plans on reopening in 2021.