Entertainment in Boston is centered around theater and music and its year-round festivals. Touring companies and resident theater companies provide for year-round enjoyment, as do the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops orchestras. Festivals include St Patrick’s Day parades and extravaganzas on American Independence Day – as well as Boston’s unique ‘First Night’ New Year’s Eve celebration.
Many entertainers in Boston either went to college or got their start in Boston, so it’s a good place to check out promising unknowns – as well as to enjoy established artists. The nightlife scene is, though, a bit tame, with closing times for clubs being 2:00. Note also that smoking is prohibited in bars, clubs and restaurants.
The hottest nightlife venue in the city is, believe it or not, a bowling alley. Kings is a 25,000-sq ft complex, housed in a former movie theater opposite the Hynes Convention Center. There are 20 bowling lanes, four of which are private, and an 8-table billiards room as well.
Boston’s theater scene is very vibrant and active: the city is one of the last places for pre-Broadway tryouts, and it’s also a popular venue for tours of established hits. Broadway in Boston is the company promoting most of these theater events. It showcases some local and international talent.
Local theater groups include the Huntington Theater Company, performing at the Boston University Theater; and the American Repertory Theater, located at Harvard University’s Loeb Drama Center. Both companies stage contemporary as well as classic productions. In the summer, there’s a special treat when the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company performs for free on the Boston Common. This occurs on Tuesday through Sunday nights during July and early August.
For music lovers, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Boston Pops present a full schedule of performances both at Symphony Hall in Boston and at their summer venue in the hills of western Massachusetts – Tanglewood.