Van Wezel earns top ranking among performing arts venues for sixth time in its seating category

Honor accorded by Venues Today, the leading trade publication for the business side of entertainment

The Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall is owned by the city. File photo

For the sixth time, the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in Sarasota has been ranked the No. 1 Performing Arts Hall in North America in the 2,000-seat category of “top spots” in Venues Today, the Van Wezel has announced.

Venues Today is “the leading international trade publication that covers the business side of entertainment,” a news release explains.

In determining the rankings, Venues Today compares and contrasts hundreds of theaters, using performances and event grosses, the release adds.

The 2016-17 Van Wezel season “was highlighted by an incredible line-up of world-renowned comedians,” the release notes. Among them were Steve Martin, Martin Short, Billy Crystal, Dave Chappelle, Daniel Tosh, Lilly Tomlin and Jay Leno. “Broadway sensation Kristin Chenoweth returned after popular demand and Idina Mezel made her Sarasota debut,” the release point out. The Van Wezel’s “Broadway headliner” during the season, Kinky Boots, earned eight standing ovations, the release adds.

Other highlights of the season, the release continues, were the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis, Orchestre National de Lyon, classical pianist Lang Lang and rock bands Boston, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Boz Scaggs with special guest The Robert Cray Band.

1 thought on “Van Wezel earns top ranking among performing arts venues for sixth time in its seating category

  1. I would be interested in what criteria were used in reaching this ranking. As an occasional patron of the Van Wezel, I find the seating in this hall abominable !

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