Philadelphia's Kimmel Center is the closest thing the city has to Broadway. So save some money on a train to New York and go downtown to see what Avenue of the Arts has to offer. 

PIFA 2018

The Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA) will be happening from May 31 to June 10 of 2018. The festival showcases "ground–breaking artistry of local and international music, dance, and aerial magic performances and installations." This includes an aerial dance party, a 24–hour art concert about the social history of the U.S., eye–catching acrobatics, live political satire, an interactive theater, and more. The festival features performers and troupes ranging from a South Korean dance group to an Egyptian comedian dubbed the “Jon Stewart of the Arab World.”


This musical, created by an all–female creative team and based on Adrienne Shelly's film, Waitress, portrays the life of Jenna, a waitress and pie–maker who wishes to leave her town and her abusive marriage. Luckily, a nearby town is hosting a baking contest, which gives Jenna the opportunity to start anew. Think Tasty videos combined with drama, romance, and a great soundtrack by Sara Bareilles. This musical will be in town from February 13 to February 18.

Something Rotten!

This comedic musical follows the stories of two brothers, Nick and Nigel Bottom, who try to write a hit play while Shakespeare keeps getting all the hits. Fortunately, a local soothsayer tells them that the future of theatre involves singing, dancing, and acting all together. With this information, the brothers decide to write the first musical ever. Check it out from February 27 to March 4 on Avenue of the Arts. 

School of Rock

Based on the popular film School of Rock, this musical tells the story of Dewey Finn, a wannabe rockstar who starts working as a substitute teacher and turns a class of straight–A students into a wild rock band. This musical will be on from March 27 to April 1, and will feature a kids’ rock band playing live on stage.

Mr. Popper’s Penguins

This musical tells the story of Mr. Popper, a painter and decorator who dreams of Antarctic adventures. To his surprise, a packing crate arrives on his doorstep one day, and inside it is a penguin. This adaptation of Richard and Florence Atwater's popular book and Hollywood film features original songs and performing penguin puppets and will be shown at the Kimmel Center on February 10.

Discounts and Packages


KimmelSTIX is the Kimmel Center's student program, which notifies you of $10 ticket offers and provides you with the best available seating. To join, you need to fill out the registration form, and you’ll begin receiving monthly emails with a rundown of all the latest options. Emily Lantz, a staff member at the Kimmel Center, explains that "it's an online–only ticket program. Students pre–register to receive emails from the Kimmel Center, and when tickets are available, you get the promo codes through emails to purchase tickets." She also adds that KimmelSTIX is the "best way for students to get those discounted Broadway tickets".

Community Rush Tickets

The Kimmel Center also offers discounted rush tickets to select shows at the Kimmel Center, the Academy of Music, and the Merriam Theater. Tickets are $30 and must be paid for in cash starting from two hours prior to curtain time at the Box Office. Tickets for Kimmel Center performances vary in pricing and go on sale at 5:30 p.m. for evening performances and 11:30 a.m. for matinees.

Build Your Own Broadway Season

This multi–show package is a discounted bundle of your favorite Broadway shows. Choose three or more of the performances available on Broadway Philadelphia and build a musical season perfect for you at a lower rate. Unfortunately for Hamilton fans, this does not include the hit musical, although tickets for that are also available through the Kimmel Center website (Ed. note: Do not throw away your shot!).


All comments eligible for publication in Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc. publications.