“There are still like 15 spots left.”
We were a few cars back in a long line for a parking lot that attendants were debating whether to declare full.
Fortunately, we made it in before they closed the lot.
When Caitie from Arizona Opera had warned me to get there early, I thought maybe she was joking about my tardy arrival to the lunch hour concert.
Turns out, Tucson Convention Center parking is no joke.
Even though the world premiere of the Riders of the Purple Sage opera was a big event, it wasn’t the only thing backing up traffic at Tucson Convention Center that night.
After we’d parked, I asked a security guard the quickest way to Tucson Music Hall.
He replied with “Oh! Are you looking for the rap thing?”
I was wearing a long velvet dress and heels.
“No, not the rap thing…”
A few minutes later, someone asked if we were looking for the game.
Apparently, in Tucson, no one bats an eye if you decide to don formalwear to see hip hop or hockey. And we noticed several people wearing cowboy hats to the opera.
What to know about Tucson Music Hall
- Tucson Music Hall is the site of Arizona Opera’s Tucson performances.
- It’s located on the Tucson Convention Center campus, along with the Leo Rich Theater and the Tucson Arena (which the locals confusingly kept referring to as “TCC”).
- Tucson Convention Center is not the same place as the Tucson Expo Center.
- Sun Link Streetcar Stop: Congress Street/Granada Avenue (6E or 6W)
285 ft – Museum of Contemporary Art
.4 mi – Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block
.5 mi – Hotel Congress and Maynard’s (lodging + dining)
.7 mi – Mercado San Agustín (dining + shopping)
.9 mi – Mission Garden
- Tucson Music Hall shares parking with other convention center venues.
- Event parking rates vary. We paid $10.
- We parked in Parking Lot A, but Lot C may be closer.
Shopera at the Opera
Performances in Tucson also have a lobby full of shopping and refreshments for sale – wine, snacks, delicious-smelling coffee, and old school west-coast favorite Thrifty ice cream!
There’s also “Shopera at the Opera” with booths of Local artists and vendors, who give part of their proceeds to support Arizona Opera.
We enjoyed seeing the inventive ways that Southern Arizona Artists’ Guild member Betty Harris found to upcycle fabric scraps and thrift store pieces. Next to her was a Barefoot Books booth with a selection of really neat-looking kids books, including the very fitting Stories from the Opera.