Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

Vacation Travel Guide
Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts which includes interior views

While seeing a play or concert in Hartford’s historic venue, look up to admire one of the largest ceiling murals in the United States.

If you are in Connecticut and want to see a show, you will likely find yourself at Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. “The Bushnell,” as it is commonly called, has been a destination for theater and music since the early 20th century.

Mortensen Hall, the original theater building, was built in 1930 in honor of Horace Bushnell, a local minister who created a lasting legacy of parks throughout Hartford. Spot similarities to features of Radio City Music Hall, the so-called “Showplace of the Nation” in New York City. The same architects are responsible for Mortensen Hall.

Look up as you walk into Mortensen Hall. Drama, one of the largest ceiling murals in the United States, spans the heights of the theater. The Muse of Drama is the mural’s centerpiece. Mythological figures surround her feet while symbols of the modern era soar above her.

In 2002, the Bushnell expanded with the 906-seat Belding Theater, named for longtime supporter Maxwell Belding. Note the ceiling mural here, which pays homage to Mortensen Hall’s celestial motifs with a modern interpretation.

Go to the glass-enclosed Autorino Great Hall just outside the Belding Theater. Your eyes will immediately be drawn to Ode to Joy, Dale Chihuly’s wild glass sculpture that dominates the space.

The Bushnell attracts world-class performers from all realms of entertainment. It has hosted legendary late-night comedian Jay Leno, the Broadway musical Wicked and the dancers from the Alvin Ailey troupe. Enjoy the classical music of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, the Bushnell’s primary tenant.

Purchase tickets online, by phone or at the box office. Some shows, like the holiday Nutcracker, sell out quickly so you should purchase your tickets well in advance. Others may be available on the day of the performance. Ticket prices vary depending on the show.

The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts is located in the heart of downtown Hartford. Choose from many eating and dining options within a short walking distance. You can easily find city parking nearby or pay for a valet service during evening performances.

Top Hotels Close to Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
3 out of 5
440 Asylum St, Hartford, CT
The price is $88 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 12
Located in Downtown Hartford, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Theater Works, XL Center, and Connecticut Convention Center. Hartford Hospital and Mark Twain ...
3.5/5 Good! (286 reviews)
"Fridge and microwave. Good heating/a/c, etc."

Reviewed on Nov 21, 2021

The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
The Goodwin Hotel
The Goodwin Hotel
3.5 out of 5
1 Haynes St, Hartford, CT
The price is $169 per night from Dec 22 to Dec 22
Located in Downtown Hartford, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Theater Works and XL Center. Connecticut Convention Center and Hartford Hospital are also ...
4.5/5 Wonderful! (972 reviews)
"Everything"

Reviewed on Nov 21, 2021

The Goodwin Hotel
Hilton Hartford
Hilton Hartford
3.5 out of 5
315 Trumbull St, Hartford, CT
The price is $131 per night from Dec 24 to Dec 24
Located in Downtown Hartford, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Hartford Stage and XL Center. Connecticut Convention Center and Xfinity Theatre are also ...
4/5 Very Good! (975 reviews)
"The staff at this hotel was very friendly. The room was immaculate in its cleanliness. The only ‘ding’ for this hotel was its lack of an in-house restaurant, perhaps due to Covid 19. The hotel was convenient to the sites I wanted to visit in Hartford."

Reviewed on Nov 8, 2021

Hilton Hartford
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

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Best Lodging Options Near Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts

The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
3 out of 5
440 Asylum St, Hartford, CT
The price is $88 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 12
The Capitol Hotel, Ascend Hotel Collection
The Goodwin Hotel
The Goodwin Hotel
3.5 out of 5
1 Haynes St, Hartford, CT
The price is $169 per night from Dec 22 to Dec 22
The Goodwin Hotel
Hilton Hartford
Hilton Hartford
3.5 out of 5
315 Trumbull St, Hartford, CT
The price is $131 per night from Dec 24 to Dec 24
Hilton Hartford
Marriott Hartford Downtown
Marriott Hartford Downtown
4 out of 5
200 Columbus Boulevard, Hartford, CT
The price is $167 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Marriott Hartford Downtown
Hampton Inn & Suites Hartford/East Hartford
Hampton Inn & Suites Hartford/East Hartford
2.5 out of 5
351 Pitkin Steet, East Hartford, CT
The price is $101 per night from Dec 12 to Dec 12
Hampton Inn & Suites Hartford/East Hartford
Holiday Inn Hartford Downtown Area, an IHG Hotel
Holiday Inn Hartford Downtown Area, an IHG Hotel
3 out of 5
100 East River Drive, East Hartford, CT
The price is $101 per night from Dec 19 to Dec 19
Holiday Inn Hartford Downtown Area, an IHG Hotel
Candlewood Suites Hartford Downtown, an IHG Hotel
Candlewood Suites Hartford Downtown, an IHG Hotel
2.5 out of 5
370 Market Street, Hartford, CT
The price is $113 per night from Dec 1 to Dec 1
Candlewood Suites Hartford Downtown, an IHG Hotel
Residence Inn by Marriott Hartford Downtown
Residence Inn by Marriott Hartford Downtown
3.5 out of 5
942 Main St, Hartford, CT
The price is $143 per night from Dec 17 to Dec 17
Residence Inn by Marriott Hartford Downtown
Urban Contemporary Buckingham Apartments
Urban Contemporary Buckingham Apartments
Hartford, CT
Urban Contemporary Buckingham Apartments
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.