Movies, Music & More in the Mountains: Sundance & the Performing Arts
For 10 days every January, the Hollywood glitterati and the paparazzi who follow them descend on Park City in droves for the star-studded Sundance Film Festival (tel. 877/733-7829 or 435/776-7878 for tickets; www.sundance.org/festival). The slate includes cutting-edge indies as well as blockbuster premières, and the event has grown into the top festival of its kind in the country. (It's also a great time to hit the slopes, since everyone else is jammed like sardines into the theaters!) Unlike the film festival in Cannes, getting tickets is neither particularly difficult nor prohibitively exclusive, though it does require advance planning. Tickets go on sale (and sell out) during a slim window of time at the end of November and the beginning of December, although a handful of tickets are made available the day of a screening, and more comprehensive packages go on sale in September. Go online or call the film festival for details.
Throughout the summer, free concerts are presented each Wednesday from 6 to 8pm at City Park. Past Sundance films are also screened for free in City Park on summer Friday nights. The Park City Film Series (www.parkcityfilmseries.com) screens independent movies at the Park City Library for $6 to $12; there are also free screenings.
The Deer Valley Music Festival (tel. 801/533-6683 for tickets or 533-5626; www.deervalleymusicfestival.org) takes place in July and August. The program includes classical masterpieces like Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture, plus jazz and popular works by composers such as Gilbert and Sullivan and John Philip Sousa. There are also concerts by acts such as Air Supply and the Gatlin Brothers. The stage faces the mountainside; bring a chair or blanket and relax under the stars. Call the box office for schedule and ticket information.
The Park City & SLC International Music Festival (tel. 435/649-5309; www.pcmusicfestival.com) presents classical performances in the summer and fall. Classical musicians from around the world attend, and programs feature soloists, chamber music, and full orchestras.
The 1,300-seat Eccles Center for the Performing Arts, 1750 Kearns Blvd., and the outdoor Snow Park Amphitheatre at Deer Valley (tel. 435/655-3114; www.ecclescenter.org), present a wide variety of top national performing arts companies. Recent productions and concerts have included Willie Nelson, Joss Stone, and Trisha Yearwood.
The Historic Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main St. (tel. 435/649-9371; www.egyptiantheatrecompany.org), was built in 1926 in the popular Egyptian Revival style. Originally used for vaudeville and silent films, this was the first theater in Park City to offer the "new talking pictures." Today, the Egyptian is the home of the Egyptian Theatre Company, which presents a variety of dramas, comedies, musicals, and other productions throughout the year.
The Club Scene
Known as Utah's "Sin City," Park City probably has the best nightlife in the state. And with the 2009 normalization of liquor laws, you no longer have to "join a private club" (more like paying a cover charge) to drink legally in bars and nightclubs. The following are busiest during ski season, and generally have fewer nights of live music at other times.
The Spur, 350 1/2 Main St. (tel. 435/615-1618; www.thespurbarandgrill.com), is a contemporary Western joint that has regular live music. Cisero's, downstairs at 306 Main St. (tel. 435/649-6800; www.ciseros.com), with a large dance floor, hosts good bands. J.B. Mulligan's Club & Pub, 804 Main St. (tel. 435/658-0717), also has live music, including a variety of jazz, reggae, bluegrass, and funk; and you can also order food -- try their peppercorn burger -- between 5 and 10pm. "Helping people forget their name since 1903," No Name Saloon, 447 Main St. (tel. 435/649-6667; www.nonamesaloon.net), is another fun place to drink. Harry O's, 427 Main St. (tel. 435/647-9494; ww.harryos-pc.com), is very popular, with a huge dance floor and live band or DJ nightly. Romantic and dimly lit, Bacchus Wine Bar, 442 Main St. (tel. 435/940-9463), pours 100 different wines by the glass and serves a scrumptious menu of light fare.