Scottsdale’s Scene for Enjoying the Arts

Editorial StaffSeptember 28, 2021
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Galleries, museums and Frank Lloyd Wright buildings are the highlight of culture in The West’s Most Western Town.

Butterfly Wonderland

This one-of-a-kind museum brings a tropical rainforest environment to
the Arizona desert as more than 3,000 butterflies from around the world flutter among the lush tropical plants and flowers.

7455 N. Pima Rd.


Photo Courtesy Jessica Jameson


This historic site is where the famous Paolo Soleri bronze and ceramic windbells are made and sold, along with pots, bowls and bronze sculptural pieces. The site also features Soleri’s innovative experimental architecture. On most weekday mornings, guests have an opportunity to witness the dramatic bronze casting process as artisans pour 2,400-degree molten bronze into handmade sand molds.

6433 E. Doubletree Ranch Rd., Paradise Valley

Desert Stages Theatre

The award-winning nonprofit provides entertainment in a 219-seat theater, as well as the intimate, cabaret-style Actors’ Café. Highlights: Into the Woods, Sept. 10-19; Clue: On Stage, Oct. 1-10; and Carrie the Musical, Oct. 22-31.

7014 E. Camelback Rd.

Don Bluth Front Row Theatre

Renowned film director Don Bluth presents classic productions in an intimate 75-seat theater. Highlights: A Bench in the Sun, through Sept. 18; Bell, Book and Candle, Sept. 30-Nov. 6; It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, Nov. 18-Dec. 30; Drinking Habits, Jan. 20-Feb. 26; and Camelot, March 24-April 30.

8989 E. Via Linda

Kerr Cultural Center

This quaint performing arts venue was once the home of Louise Lincoln Kerr, an active composer as well as a gifted and well-trained musician who played the viola with several symphonies. World music, indie folk, jazz, soul, baroque pop and more grace the stage each season.

6110 N. Scottsdale Rd.

Ravenscroft Theater

Set to open in October, this 30,000-square-foot performance space boasts a state-of-the-art sound system for its intimate 200-seat theater. The music venue also offers the Jazzbird Lounge, which hosts popular and up-and-coming local musicians and serves wine and local craft beers.

8445 E. Hartford Dr.

Scottsdale Artists’ School

Working professional artists travel from across the country to teach at this nonprofit school, which offers more than 200 diverse programs each year. Instruction is geared toward artists of all levels, from absolute beginners to advanced artists, with options that include one- to five-day workshops, weekly classes, a premier youth and teen academy, destination workshops and open studios sessions.

3720 N. Marshall Way

Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts

The center offers diverse, high-quality presentations of classical and world music, dance, jazz, theater, film, educational programs and festivals. Highlights: Mavis Staples, Sept. 14; Branford Marsalis, Nov. 4; Vienna Boys Choir, Nov. 16; Jake Shimabukuro, Nov. 26; Rita Rudner, Jan.28; Momix, March 11; Michael Feinstein, March 20; Dorrance Dance, March 25; Marc Cohn, April 13; and Balloonacy, April 29-30.

7380 E. Second St.

Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Arts

A museum dedicated to contemporary art, architecture and design that challenges expectations, SMoCA has four main galleries that showcase changing exhibitions and works from the museum’s growing permanent collection, plus an outdoor courtyard featuring Knight Rise, a Skyspace enclosure by James Turrell.

7374 E. Second St.


Scottsdale Rodeo Museum

Open November through May, the museum features historic cowboy and rodeo artifacts and memorabilia dating back to the 1950s.

3806 N. Brown Ave.

Scottsdale’s Museum of the West

Celebrating the art, history, culture and unique stories of the American West, past and present, Western Spirit: Scottsdale’s Museum of the West features rotating exhibits, gallery tours and educational activities.

3830 N. Marshall Way

Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center

Injured and orphaned wildlife get a second chance at this nonprofit, which rescues bobcats, wolves, bears, mountain lions, deer, owls and javelina.

27026 N. 156th St.


Photo courtesy Jill Richards

Taliesin West

Frank Lloyd Wright began building this desert masterpiece in 1937 as his personal winter home, studio and architectural campus, and spent his winters here until his death in 1959 at the age of 91. Visitors can experience the architect’s ability to integrate indoor and outdoor spaces through a variety of public tours, which range from a self-paced audio tour to a 60-minute guided overview. Chihuly in the Desert, Dec. 3-June 19, pairs Wright’s work with ornate glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly, with installations inside the building, on the lawns, floating on the water and emerging from the desert itself.

12621 N. Frank Lloyd Wright Blvd.


Thursday ArtWalk

Scottsdale Gallery Association hosts this weekly celebration featuring gallery show openings and artist receptions.

Downtown Scottsdale


USS Arizona Memorial Gardens

A tribute to those who were aboard the USS Arizona when it was attacked and sank at Pearl Harbor, the serene 5-acre gardens feature a piece of the ship’s original boathouse along with 1,512 commemorative columns – each representative of a life aboard the ship that day.

7455 N. Pima Rd., Salt River Indian Community


Visitors interact with and become part of the art as this evolving experience offers a dozen immersive and thought-provoking artworks spread across a 16,000-square-foot space.

Scottsdale Fashion Square
7014 E. Camelback Rd.