Music extensive guide to Berkeley and San Francisco area, plus inspiring articles about trips around the world

Berkeley and Beyond


Annual Events




SAN FRANCISCO ●Attractions●Performing Arts


Most of these venues have an admission fee.

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Biscuits & Blues
  401 Mason St./Geary St., 2 blks. from Union Square.  Spicy Southern cooking--including fried chicken and the famous namesake biscuits--is dished up along with hefty portions of the blues in this intimate subterranean venue.  Sundays bring on family-friendly jazz and a dinner special with all the fixin’s. 


Donald Pippin’s Pocket Opera  At various Bay Area venues.  Bright and witty, this talented troupe skillfully performs sometimes dramatic, sometimes hilarious, but always enjoyable opera that is easy to understand.  One of these performances is a great introduction to opera for anyone.  Though most shows are appropriate for children, some are produced especially for them.

The Fillmore  1805 Geary Blvd., near Japantown.  Janis Joplin and The Grateful Dead became huge here in the 60s.  This historic ballroom now books more modest acts. 

Lamplighters Music Theatre  Performances at Yerba Buena Center for The Arts, 701 Mission St./3rd St., South of Market.  This company has produced and performed light opera and musical theater—particularly Gilbert & Sullivan—since 1952.

Old First Concerts  1751 Sacramento St./Van Ness Ave., in Old First Church.  An innovative program of outstanding music is presented year-round in this acoustically superb 1911 church. 

San Francisco Conservatory of Music  50 Oak St., Civic Center.  Some of the many musical programs scheduled here are free.

San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus  Formed on the night Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk were slain at City Hall in 1978, this group now has more than 200 singers and performs internationally. 

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SFJAZZ Center  201 Franklin St./Fell St., Hayes Valley.  When designing this new jazz venue, careful thought was put into giving it the stature of a concert hall but with the informality of a club.  Sight lines are excellent, sound is tonally balanced, and seats are comfortable (their arms have a drink holder).  Featuring a kind of corrugated aluminum look in greys and blacks, the room gives off a cool vibe. 

San Francisco Opera  301 Van Ness Ave./Grove St., in War Memorial Opera House, Civic Center.  This is the nation’s second-oldest opera company (the oldest being the Met in NYC). 

San Francisco Symphony  201 Van Ness Ave./Grove St., in Davies Symphony Hall, Civic Center.  In addition to classic programs, the symphony presents special “Music for Families”  concerts designed to introduce children to classical music, and a July “Summer in the City” concert series that showcases classical favorites as well as Broadway and popular music. 
          The annual Black & White Ball fund-raiser presents a stellar roster of musical dance entertainment--rock, Latin, country, swing, jazz, and more. 



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