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Louisville, Kentucky

Louisville Arts: Art Scene in Louisville

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Louisville is the cultural capital of Kentucky, thanks in large part to being the center of the steamboat and railroad networks in the early 1800’s. Louisville is also home to tight knit African- American, Latino and Jewish communities, which strengthen its character. In addition to musical, ballet and opera companies, Louisville is home to the Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, one of the top regional theaters in the country.

Arts Info

  • LouisvilleMojo—Interactive site that includes user discussions, blog posts, news articles, and reviews covering the cultural life in Louisville.

Art Museums

Speed Art Museum

Speed Art Museum

The Speed Art Museum takes its name from Hattie Bishop Speed, who founded the museum in memorial to her husband in 1925. Opened to the public in 1927, the museum is the oldest and largest art museum in Kentucky, with over 13,000 works in its permanent collection. The collection includes decorative arts, European painting, a collection devoted to Kentucky art, among others.

Be sure to visit …more…

Theater

Actors Theatre of Louisville

Actors Theatre of Louisville

One of the most important not-for-profit theatres in the country, the Actor’s Theatre of Louisville has contributed to the creation of some of the most significant new plays of the past thirty years. Pulitzer Prize-winning titles like Crimes of the Heart, The Gin Game, and Dinner with Friends made their world debuts on ATL’s stages, with a further 300 new scripts, developed since the theatre’s conception in 1964, now in …more…

Kentucky Shakespeare Festival

Kentucky Shakespeare Festival (Louisville, KY)

In 1949, C. Douglas Ramey established a theatre workshop called The Carriage House Players, named for the building at 310 W. Kentucky in which it found a home. The following year, the troupe relocated to 1011 South Fifth Street, and in 1960, it gave its first summer Shakespeare performance in Louisville’s Central Park. A program called “Students for Shakespeare” was begun in 1962, bringing the plays of the Bard to …more…

Stage One: The Louisville Children's Theatre

Stage One: The Louisville Children’s Theatre

Louisville’s professional home for theatre for young audiences, Stage One is one of the country’s top rated children’s theatres. Recently entering its 63rd annual season, Stage One finds its inspiration in challenging works relevant to the tastes and issues facing youth in modern times. From the light-hearted fun of Junie B. Jones and If You Throw a Pig a Party, to challenging adaptations of Antigone and …more…

Classical Music

Louisville Chorus

Louisville Chorus

Over the course of its 73+ year history, The Louisville Chorus has enriched the Louisville area with the highest calibre of choral music and is the longest-thriving choral organization in the state. Numerous recordings, international tours and numerous performances on radio and television have all enhanced the reputation of this 50-singer auditioned ensemble. During its season, The Louisville Chorus performs around eight concerts at various venues throughout the city, …more…

Louisville Orchestra

Louisville Orchestra

The Louisville Orchestra is one of several top-notch arts organizations in Kentucky. It was founded in 1937 and today remains one of the jewels in the crown of Louisville’s art scene. The 71-member full-time ensemble presents a number of concert series throughout its season, including outdoor summer concerts (2010 featured Brahms symphonies), the WOW! multimedia series, a stunning Pops series with many big …more…

Opera

Kentucky Opera

Kentucky Opera

The 12th-oldest company in the United States, Kentucky Opera began with a modest $10,000 budget in 1952. But there was nothing modest about the intentions of its founder, conductor Moritz von Bombard, who also served as stage director, set designer, marketing manager, and even trained the singers. By the end of the decade the company had mounted five world premieres. The repertoire also included numerous …more…

Dance

Louisville Ballet

Louisville Ballet

Since its founding in 1952, Louisville Ballet has presented approximately 70 world-premiere ballets and has accumulated a repertoire of over 150 works from choreographers such as Anthony Tudor, Kurt Jooss, José Limón, and Paul Taylor, among many others. It is also the only regional ballet company with which Mikhail Baryshnikov has performed in repertory performances. Grounded in the classical tradition, the company performs several …more…

Venues

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts has been voted four times the state’s best venue for dance, theatre and music by Kentucky Monthly magazine readers.  It is home to many of the state’s major performing arts organizations, including the Louisville Orchestra, Kentucky Opera, Louisville Ballet, Stage One and PNC Bank Broadway Across America.

In addition to the three theatres contained within …more…

Art Museums

Speed Art Museum

Speed Art Museum

The Speed Art Museum takes its name from Hattie Bishop Speed, who founded the museum in memorial to her husband in 1925. Opened to the public in 1927, the museum is the oldest and largest art museum in Kentucky, with over 13,000 works in its permanent collection. The collection includes decorative arts, European painting, a collection devoted to Kentucky art, among others.

Be sure to visit …more…

Theater

Actors Theatre of Louisville

Actors Theatre of Louisville

One of the most important not-for-profit theatres in the country, the Actor’s Theatre of Louisville has contributed to the creation of some of the most significant new plays of the past thirty years. Pulitzer Prize-winning titles like Crimes of the Heart, The Gin Game, and Dinner with Friends made their world debuts on ATL’s stages, with a further 300 new scripts, developed since the theatre’s conception in 1964, now in …more…

Kentucky Shakespeare Festival

Kentucky Shakespeare Festival (Louisville, KY)

In 1949, C. Douglas Ramey established a theatre workshop called The Carriage House Players, named for the building at 310 W. Kentucky in which it found a home. The following year, the troupe relocated to 1011 South Fifth Street, and in 1960, it gave its first summer Shakespeare performance in Louisville’s Central Park. A program called “Students for Shakespeare” was begun in 1962, bringing the plays of the Bard to …more…

Stage One: The Louisville Children's Theatre

Stage One: The Louisville Children’s Theatre

Louisville’s professional home for theatre for young audiences, Stage One is one of the country’s top rated children’s theatres. Recently entering its 63rd annual season, Stage One finds its inspiration in challenging works relevant to the tastes and issues facing youth in modern times. From the light-hearted fun of Junie B. Jones and If You Throw a Pig a Party, to challenging adaptations of Antigone and …more…

Classical Music

Louisville Chorus

Louisville Chorus

Over the course of its 73+ year history, The Louisville Chorus has enriched the Louisville area with the highest calibre of choral music and is the longest-thriving choral organization in the state. Numerous recordings, international tours and numerous performances on radio and television have all enhanced the reputation of this 50-singer auditioned ensemble. During its season, The Louisville Chorus performs around eight concerts at various venues throughout the city, …more…

Louisville Orchestra

Louisville Orchestra

The Louisville Orchestra is one of several top-notch arts organizations in Kentucky. It was founded in 1937 and today remains one of the jewels in the crown of Louisville’s art scene. The 71-member full-time ensemble presents a number of concert series throughout its season, including outdoor summer concerts (2010 featured Brahms symphonies), the WOW! multimedia series, a stunning Pops series with many big …more…

Opera

Kentucky Opera

Kentucky Opera

The 12th-oldest company in the United States, Kentucky Opera began with a modest $10,000 budget in 1952. But there was nothing modest about the intentions of its founder, conductor Moritz von Bombard, who also served as stage director, set designer, marketing manager, and even trained the singers. By the end of the decade the company had mounted five world premieres. The repertoire also included numerous …more…

Dance

Louisville Ballet

Louisville Ballet

Since its founding in 1952, Louisville Ballet has presented approximately 70 world-premiere ballets and has accumulated a repertoire of over 150 works from choreographers such as Anthony Tudor, Kurt Jooss, José Limón, and Paul Taylor, among many others. It is also the only regional ballet company with which Mikhail Baryshnikov has performed in repertory performances. Grounded in the classical tradition, the company performs several …more…

Venues

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts

The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts has been voted four times the state’s best venue for dance, theatre and music by Kentucky Monthly magazine readers.  It is home to many of the state’s major performing arts organizations, including the Louisville Orchestra, Kentucky Opera, Louisville Ballet, Stage One and PNC Bank Broadway Across America.

In addition to the three theatres contained within …more…