Valhalla Tahoe begins annual Art, Music and Theatre Festival |

Valhalla Tahoe begins annual Art, Music and Theatre Festival

Autumn Whitney
Dirty Cello begins the Art, Music and Theatre Festival on Wednesday, June 21.
Courtesy Photo |

For over three decades, Valhalla Tahoe has been home to a mix of creatives as part of its Art, Music and Theatre Festival. Now entering its 38th season, the nonprofit has extended the series’ run and once again brought in a mix of entertainment suitable for all ages.

“It’s our most eclectic — and probably one of our best — seasons yet,” said Evangeline Elston, who is entering her fourth year as festival director. “We’re doing music from all different genres, starting with a cello-driven blues band and then we have everything from jazz to rock ‘n’ roll to Cajun, folk, bluegrass, celtic, Brazilian jazz — all kinds for our concert series.”

In prior years the Art, Music and Theatre Festival ran from mid-June through August, but 2017 marks the first time the schedule reaches into October.

Throughout the course of the four-month fest, Valhalla Tahoe welcomes the Tahoe Improv Players, a musical, a play and kids camps (one week for both drama and art) in addition to its live music lineup.

“There is stuff for kids, adults, artists — people who want to be entertained,” Elston noted. “There is something going on all the time starting [June 21] and into fall.”

Over 20 acts, most of which perform in either the Boathouse Theatre or on the Grand Lawn, are expected to visit the Valhalla Tahoe site throughout summer and early fall. To get a good mix of the festival, Elston recommends seeing the musical, play and an evening concert.

The season begins Wednesday, June 21, with a performance from blues and bluegrass band Dirty Cello. According to a press release from Valhalla, the band “gets your heart thumping and toes tapping!”

Additional festival highlights include the musical comedy “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” — a Tony Award-winning story about six tweens who compete in a spelling championship — and the ghost play “The Woman in Black,” an eerie tale about a solicitor who is tasked with settling the estate of a woman who has passed away.

“Everything is certainly open to kids attending. The summer comedy is family-oriented, but we do say it’s PG-13 — some might consider it teenage content.

“The improv nights are family friendly, and kids go nuts because they are very participatory. The outdoor concerts are really great for families,” Elston explained. “I would say that the play in October [“The Woman in Black”] is probably not a kids play, but other than that, [the festival] is oriented for everyone.”

Tickets for concerts and plays range from $10-$35 and are available online at, where additional information about all events can be found.

“The thing about entertainment these days is that tickets can cost $100 or more, but out here we have reasonably priced tickets, and the quality of entertainment is incredible. These are world-class performers,” Elston said.

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