When you visit St. Petersburg’s Mahaffey Theater, you might feel like you’re walking into a great theater in a European capital. Officially called the Duke Energy Center for the Arts – The Mahaffey Theater, it has a grand ambiance with a 2,031-seat venue that is entirely suitable for big-name events. That has certainly been true over its operating history of more than 60 years, with performances by music artists such as Elvis Presley, Louis Armstrong, Diana Ross, Tony Bennett, Van Halen and many others. Look up the theater’s schedule while you’re in town to discover who’s performing..
When the theater was opened in 1965 and originally called the Bayfront Center, the city foresaw the importance of such a building to promote sports, musical and theatrical arts in the area. Hockey games were played here. The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey even performed circus shows in the arena. It eventually became incorporated as one theater and was completed in 2011 by Mahaffey family benefactors.
Attend an event to experience outstanding acoustics that deservedly make it the home of the Florida Orchestra. Appreciate the beautiful view of palm trees lining Tampa Bay through the theater’s large glass windows.
The theater has made a point of including children in its arts program to provide exposure to the cultural arts and to encourage them to be future patrons. Schools take part in the program known as Class Acts, which involves teachers and students analyzing and discovering certain shows.
Visit the Mahaffey Theater’s website to discover what shows are occurring and to buy tickets. Ample accessible parking is available for an additional fee. The Salvador Dalí Museum, which has one of the largest collections of the artist’s work outside Europe, is part of the entertainment complex.
Find the Mahaffey Theater in Downtown St. Petersburg. Enjoy a full evening by arriving early and dining at a nearby restaurant. Take a stroll along the picturesque moonlit shore after the show.