If you only have one night in Sevilla, you should go to flamenco. The city is a cradle of the art form, and has the busiest performance schedule in the country outside Madrid. There are three formats to choose among.
Two educational centers offer very pure flamenco in a style intended to be as educational as it is entertaining. The Museo del Baile Flamenco, Calle Manuel Rojas Marcos, 13 (tel. 95-434-03-11; www.museoflamenco.com), offers dance-oriented performances in its courtyard daily at 7pm. Admission is 20€ for adults, 14€ seniors and students, and 12€ children. The Casa de la Memoria de Al Andalus, Calle Cuna, 6 (tel. 95-456-06-70; www.casadelamemoria.es), has two shows per night in a small courtyard space, usually featuring a small troupe of a musician or two, a singer, and one or two dancers. The emphasis here is on early 20th-century styles that emphasize singing as well as dancing. Shows are at 7:30pm and 9pm. Admission is 16€ adults, 14€ students, and 10€ ages 6 to 11. Arrive early, and you can also tour the flamenco history exhibitions.
The flamenco nightclub spectacle, or tablao, of choreographed flamenco performances is an honored tradition in Sevilla. Most tablaos give you a drink with basic admission and try to sell you a dinner for an extra 20€ to 40€. The dinner is rarely worth the price, but it is convenient and you may get better seats. El Patio Sevillano, Paseo de Cristóbal Colón, 11 (tel. 95-421-41-20; www.elpatiosevillano.com), has 90-minute shows twice nightly at 7pm and 9:30pm. Admission is 37€. El Arenal, Calle Rodó, 7 (tel. 95-421-64-92; www.tablaoelarenal.com), also has two nightly shows at 8pm and 10pm. Admission is 37€. At Los Gallos, Plaza de Santa Cruz, 11 (tel. 95-421-69-81; www.tablaolosgallos.com), the twice-nightly, 2-hour shows begin at 8pm and 10:30pm. Admission is 35€ adults, 20€ children under 8.
Finally, there is the flamenco bar scene, where you may or may not encounter someone playing and/or dancing, but at least you don’t have to sit politely in folding chairs. Three of the best are in Triana: El Rejoneo, Calle Betis, 31B; the dance club Lo Nuestro next door at Calle Betis, 31A on Tuesdays and Thursdays; and T de Triana, Calle Betis, 20. They all open between 11pm and midnight and stay open until dawn.
Drinks & Tapas
Most Spaniards consider an evening of snacking and drinking to be the definition of a good time. An excellent tapas scene fills Calle Joaquín Guichot, a street parallel with the south side of Plaza Nueva, and spills out westward on Calle Zaragoza. Another very popular spot for drinks and tapas is the Gastrosol, the bar at Las Setas (Metropol Parasol) in Plaza de Encarnación. As the night advances on Wednesdays through Saturdays, prowl the Alameda de Hercules forthe best in dance clubs and cocktail bars, which don’t open before 10 or 11pm. Most are at least gay-friendly, and those that are overtly gay also welcome a straight crowd. A couple of the best bets are Bar 1987, Alameda de Hercules, 93, where shoulder pads, mullets, and Euro disco prove that the Eighties never died. Bar El Barón Rampante, Calle Arias Montano, 3, is one of the most popular spots.
Though often the setting for operas, Sevilla didn’t get its own opera house until the 1990s. The Teatro de la Maestranza, Paseo de Colón, 22 (tel. 95-422-33-44; www.teatromaestranza.com), quickly became one of the world’s premier venues for opera. The season focuses on works inspired by the city, including Verdí’s La Forza del Destino and Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro,although jazz, classical music, and even Spanish zarzuelas (operettas) are also performed here. The opera house may be visited only during performances. Tickets (which vary in price, depending on the event) can be purchased daily from 10am to 2pm and 5:30 to 8:30pm at the box office in front of the theater.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.