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Hollywood Bowl

  • Things to do
  • Hollywood
  • price 2 of 4
  • Recommended
John Williams at the Hollywood Bowl
Photograph: Michael Juliano
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Time Out says

The Hollywood Bowl is beautiful even when it’s empty (when there’s no performance, the iconic venue doubles as a county park). But when there’s a show—when picnic basket-toting concertgoers amble up the hill and fill amphiteater’s 18,000 seats—it’s simply magical.

The summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic since 1922, the Bowl is simply unlike any other concert venue in L.A.; seeing a show here isn’t just a performance, it’s an experience. The gates typically open two hours prior to showtime, when guests stream in and start to claim the picnic areas. Yes, you can bring your own food, and even your own bottles of beer and wine for LA Phil-produced shows (as opposed to lease events, which aren’t BYOB friendly).

Being just about anywhere inside the Bowl feels electric, but of course where you sit does still matter (the bulk of the venue is bench seating). If you’re able to splurge on the box seats (which can cost hundreds of dollars each), you’ll be treated to four foldable chairs with two tables that pop open for the ultimate pre-show picnic. On the opposite end, if you’re booking tickets early you might be able to nab $1 bench seats all the way in the back for some LA Phil shows. If you don’t want to drop a ton on seats but do still want a taste of a premium experience, consider booking a reservation at the Backyard, an open-air restaurant right next to one of the huge screens that flank the stage. Reserve an early time slot and you’re welcome to wine and dine right up until the start of the show.

There’s, of course, one notorious downside to seeing a show at the Bowl, but we don’t think that should stop you from coming here. Traffic can be horrendous given its canyon location (however early you think you should leave, leave even earlier), and the parking lots are all stacked, meaning you’re stuck until any adjacent cars can get out. If you insist on parking on site, just know that as of the summer of 2024, the large Lot B has been turned into a shuttle pickup and drop-off zone, while Lot C across the street is a rideshare hub—leaving only the expensive Lot A and the smaller Lot D across the street, both of which are still stacked. Otherwise, we strongly suggest either parking at or taking the Metro to Ovation Hollywood and then taking the shuttle or walking (it’s about 20-plus minutes slightly uphill), or using the Bowl shuttle from the L.A. Zoo (there are park and ride buses to farther destinations around the city, but the zoo bus is by far the most efficient).

Michael Juliano
Written by
Michael Juliano

Details

Address:
2301 N Highland Ave
Los Angeles
90068
Price:
Tickets $1–$150; parking $45–$90
Opening hours:
Box office (summer season only): Tue–Sun noon–6pm
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What’s on

Mitski

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Mitski has a talent for swift transformation. Over the past several years, she’s rocketed from self-releasing her first two albums and playing DIY gigs to selling out major venues months in advance. Catch her in support of her latest album, The Land Is Inhospitable and So Are We.

deadmau5

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Named for the Canadian electro-tech jacker’s cat (how sweet!), the rodentia-head-sporting deadmau5 (Joel Thomas Zimmerman) brings his mind-melting array of flashing lights and sonic boom to the Hollywood Bowl for “retro5pective,” a show to celebrate two decades of his music. You might want to pack your sunglasses.

Caifanes + Café Tacvba

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The two legendary Mexican rock bands team up for this coheadlining show at the Hollywood Bowl.

Vampire Weekend

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At times a little bit South African rhythm by way of Paul Simon, a little bit New York indie rock and a little bit yacht rock, Vampire Weekend returns to L.A. for a show at the Hollywood Bowl. 

Hollywood Bowl Jazz Festival

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Keen to see jazz greats past and present? Get ready for mellow harmonies and earthy grooves at the annual Hollywood Bowl Jazz Festival this summer. The two-day concert includes performances from Jodeci, Kamasi Washington, Robert Glasper and more. Remember, it’s at the Hollywood Bowl, so why not share a bottle of wine with some friends and groove along with the jazz’s pride and glory?

Juneteenth Celebration at the Hollywood Bowl

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T-Pain curates and leads this celebration of Juneteenth and Black music at the Hollywood Bowl, with assistance from conductor Derrick Hodge and the Color of Noize Orchestra.

Noah Kahan

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The singer-songwriter’s “Stick Season” quickly became a viral sensation on TikTok, as did his album of lockdown songs by the same name. Now, Kahan hits the road at staggeringly sized venues, including two dates in L.A. at the Hollywood Bowl.

Opening Night at the Bowl: Henry Mancini 100th Celebration

  • Classical and opera

Between “Moon River” and the instantly recognizable themes from The Pink Panther and Peter Gunn, you’ve surely heard at least a handful of Henry Mancini’s memorable songs. To mark 100 years since the late composer’s birth, the Hollywood Bowl has assembled a star-studded mix of performers, including Michael Bublé, Dave Koz and Cynthia Erivo (and the season-opening fireworks show deserves a mention here, too).

Chris Stapleton

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Roots Picnic: Hip-Hop is the Love of My Life

  • Rap, hip-hop and R&B

The Roots headline this hip-hop fest at the Hollywood Bowl, which boasts the likes of Queen Latifah, Common, Digable Planets, Arrested Development, the Pharcyde and Black Sheep.

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