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“Great Venue” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall

Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
777 North Tamiami Trail (US 41), Sarasota, FL 34236
(941) 955-7676
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Ranked #19 of 49 Attractions in Sarasota
Type: Operas, Symphonies, Theaters & Stadiums
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Attraction details
Owner description: A good place for cultural entertainment.
Punta Gorda, Florida
Top Contributor
201 reviews 201 reviews
122 attraction reviews
Reviews in 85 cities Reviews in 85 cities
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
“Great Venue”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2014

My wife and I attend performances at the Van Wezel several times each year while we are spending the winter months in Florida. We love the venue. The theatre is not too large so even the seats in the rear are pretty good. Nonetheless we always try to get seats no farther back that row 12. These are in the Golden Circle or just to the left or right of it. Parking is free and just outside the theatre. I think they have about 2500 seats so it is pretty intimate. We fine it is always easy to come and go. I do not think you will be disappointed with the theatre.

Visited March 2014
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201 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Nokomis, Florida, United States
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Not A Bad Seat in the House”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2014

We recently saw Jerry Seinfeld and Joan Rivers there and enjoyed it very much. The seats are comfy and the ushers are very helpful. They are prompt with the curtain and the lighting is great! And prices are reasonable for such big names.

Visited March 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Who Planned This Place?”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

My problem with printing the tickets I purchased online foreshadowed events to come. The box office was kind enough to print and mail the tickets when I explained that the link they emailed led to a broken page. I was the third caller that day with a similar complaint but the info was not passed along to anyone who could fix it. I drove from Tampa to Sarasota to see Jerry Seinfeld. I heard good things about the big purple venue The signage directing cars into the parking lot is non existent. We overshot the entrance, then saw a stacked sign for many different venues a block later. Van Wezel was listed so we turned as indicated.We ended up in a remote lot not suitable for a handicapped person. We retraced our route, turned by the marquee sign and ended up with other out of towners in the valet lot which we were promtly turned away from. What a mess that caused. Eventually we found our way to the valet parking drop off spot. Once inside, it took 2 elevtor rides and a long walk for my handicapped sister to get to our seats. Our seats were good but the long trek to them was not easy for someone who has trouble walking.

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burtonsville, Maryland
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Horrible seating layout designed by idiots”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2014

My condolences to anyone who donated to the building of this facility. The folks in charge of the interior layout were massively overpaid. You can only get to seats along the side by elevator or stairs. There are no aisles running up and down anywhere except along the sides. The rows are continuous--about 64 seats all in one long row. The seats are numbered 1-32 with the number one in the exact middle of the row. Now, if you enter on the right side and need seat 15 but your seat is labeled left, you have to turn around and exit the row entirely, go back downstairs, yep, then go to the other side of the hall and go back up the left side. That is how it is done. And why in the world aren't there centered aisles???? There is the perfect location for two aisles to run the length. They would have to remove 2 seats all along to make it happen. But, folks, if there were any kind of emergency, about 1,700 people are in real peril. Now, there is a small army of personnel there to read your tickets and to help make sure you ascend on the correct side. Except that the ticket machine printed out incorrect information for some of us....It is a nice enough venue, easy to get to, lots of parking including valet--don't know what that other reviewer was talking about, snacks, a reservation-only restaurant and very friendly staff. The acoustics were great. So be sure you know where you are sitting, and pray a hurricane or fire does not ruin your evening. Having your affairs in order is a good thing regardless...

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ontario
Top Contributor
72 reviews 72 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“Concert Hall”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2014

We saw Kenny Rogers at the Van Wezel Feb 14. Like many other reviews, the facility is a little old when you consider accessibility. For those requiring assistance, I would suggest valet parking, as you can go right to the door. The parking lot is large, easy to find a spot. The hall is neat and tidy, nice decor coming into and in the hall itself. The biggest issue is the seating, no aisles so you have to dance your way along the rows of seats, which are quite long. No washroom breaks!! At the end of the show we exited the hall in good time, so if there ever was a fire or other need to exit, I suppose it would work out OK. The show was good, will visit again.

Visited February 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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