By Cristina Alonso
January 12, 2015
Franck Fotos / Alamy

Bands, artists, and performers from all over the world frequently say they like to play in Mexico City because how excited (and, let’s face it– crazy) the fans get, and they have a point: we love a good live performance. Fortunately, the city has plenty of venues, from arenas to concert halls to intimate clubs, where fans from all walks of life can enjoy their favorite shows. For high-brow fans, there’s Palacio de Bellas Artes, which hosts classic performances—ballet, opera, and regional dance– and Polyforum Siqueiros, a multi-discipline concert hall that’s a work of art in itself. Hard-core music fans should not miss a show at Sala Nezahualcóyotl, which boasts what are probably the best acoustics in the city. And if your favorite, big-name performer is in town, there’s a good chance they’ll play at Teatro Metropolitan or Auditorio Nacional, two of the most important venues in Mexico City.

Auditorio Nacional

The spectacular building, remodeled in the ‘80s by Teodoro González de León and Abraham Zabludovsky, has hosted countless of the city’s biggest shows, from Elton John to the Mariinsky Theater Ballet. The 10,000-seat venue is also home to the Monumental Organ, which is played in very special performances and can adapt to all kinds of music, from religious to rock.

Palacio de Bellas Artes

This breathtaking building was completed in 1934 and has been the most important center for fine arts in the country ever since. The main hall boasts works of art such as the crystal curtain with an image of the Popocatépetl and Iztaccíhuatl volcanoes, and a beautiful crystal chandelier. The National Opera Company and the National Symphonic Orchestra hold their season performances here.

Teatro Metropolitan

Once a movie theater, this beautiful downtown concert hall first opened in 1943 and is considered a great example of the eclectic architecture of those days. Today, it hosts all sorts of live performances and is popular for two main reasons: it’s the perfect medium-sized venue (roughly 3,000 people), and you can bring your drinks inside the theater.

Polyforum Siqueiros

Marvel at the building’s more than 90,000 square feet of art, constituted by its twelve exterior panels and the mural La Marcha de la Humanidad, all by Mexican painter David Alfaro Siqueiros, one of the country’s masters of muralism. Head over for plays, concerts, poetry readings and even art exhibits.

Sala Nezahualcóyotl

This monumental concert hall, built specifically for Mexico’s National Autonomous University’s Philharmonic Orchestra, can host 2,177 people who are serious about music. With excellent acoustics (thanks to Christopher Jaffe, who was in charge of acoustic design) and a stage that’s right in the middle of the hall, the music sounds equally good wherever you sit.

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