Live theatre is a treat for all ages and your kids don’t need to grow up before they can start attending! Calgary has a wealth of options for a wonderful family night out. Some are relatively inexpensive and tickets to a special event like these make a wonderful gift. From local theatre to travelling Broadway productions and ballet to live symphony, keep reading to find something for your family.
Click the theatre title to see the current show line-up.
Alberta Ballet is Canada’s second-largest ballet company, beloved for its delightful, classical repertoire and engaging, contemporary works. Alberta Ballet is renowned for family classics, such as the annual Christmas special, The Nutcracker. They also demonstrate their ingenuity and cultural connection by making ballet relevant to Albertans with such creations as Balletlujah! – a tribute to k.d. lang, and All of Us – The Tragically Hip Ballet. Whether you love the classics, with tutus and tiaras, or prefer your dancing a little edgier and more modern, Alberta Ballet will likely have something for you. The Alberta Ballet runs a full repertoire of shows each season and often has family-friendly options.
Where: Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
Address: 1415 14 Ave NW, Calgary AB
Alberta Theatre Productions is a not-for-profit, professional theatre company that plays in the Martha Cohen Theatre. They produce a wide range of high-quality plays, often focusing on Canadian playwriting, some of which are designed for children. Every year, they produce a Family Holiday Show.
Where: Martha Cohen Theatre
Address: 220 9 Ave SE, Calgary, AB
Bert Church Live Theatre is a fully equipped, live performing arts facility, only a short drive from Calgary. The facility seats 377 people and offers audiences with an intimate opportunity to experience world-renowned performers. The charm of a small city venue that provides an up close and personal experience, plus free parking, is definitely worth the drive.
Where: The Bert Church Live Theatre
Address: 1000 E Lake Blvd SE, Airdrie, AB
Broadway Across Canada is a theatre company that brings the best of Broadway to our city. Every year they come to Calgary with a variety of the hottest shows on the Broadway scene. While many of these shows are designed for an adult audience, there are usually some shows every year to delight the children in your family.
Where: Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
Address: 1415 14th Avenue NW, Calgary AB
Founded in 1972, Calgary Opera’s Mission is to be the best at connecting people, through the magic of opera, to themselves, to each other, and to the community.
For 44 years, Calgary Opera has made a name for itself as a company that is committed to the development of Canadian talent and the development of new opera works, as well as bringing opera to all ages in the community on a broader scale. They bring opera to younger audiences through school tours in Calgary and northern/southern Alberta. As well, the company’s For Students Only Dress Rehearsals provides thousands of students with hugely discounted tickets not otherwise available.
Where: Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium
Address: 1415 14th Ave NW, Calgary, AB
Price: Tickets starting at $40.00; Student and Senior (65+) rates apply in select areas
The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra has been bringing live music to Calgary audiences since 1955 when the Alberta Philharmonic and the Calgary Symphony merged together. Lauded for their expert versatility, they perform a wide range of music for all ages. They offer educational opportunities, and their home is the Jack Singer Hall in the Arts Commons in downtown Calgary.
At various points throughout the year, the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra presents Symphony Sundays, a symphony experience specially designed for children. But there are other concerts that children may enjoy, especially older kids.
Where: Jack Singer Concert Hall (Unless otherwise indicated.)
Address: 205 8 Ave SE, Calgary, AB
Calgary Young People’s Theatre was created with the desire to inspire and develop young people in the arts by offering a safe, creative space. Through their classes, camps, workshops, and production opportunities, youth ages 9 – 17 can explore the creative arts and develop their potential. They are given a chance to audition for productions, and also learn other theatrical skills.
Where: West Village Theatre
Address: 2007 10 Ave SW, Calgary, AB
Jubilations Dinner Theatre is now offering a Junior Series. With dinner and a show suited for kids, it’s perfect for a great family night out. With fun shows and funny parodies, the whole family will enjoy the Junior Series. Or, check out some of the other shows for older kids or date night.
Where: Jubilations Dinner Theatre
Address: 1002 37th St SW, Calgary, AB
The Loose Moose Theatre Company makes going to the theatre an experience that is truly magical for children 4 – 10 years old, as well as fun and entertaining for parents. Loose Moose has gained an international reputation for innovation and excellence in improvisational theatre. They also train actors who are interested in an improvisational career. Plan an affordable family night out that everyone can enjoy!
Where: 2nd Floor of the Crossroads Market – South West Entrance
Address: 1235 – 26th Ave. S.E., Calgary, AB
Pumphouse Theatre was started in the early 1970s to help fill a theatre void in Calgary at that time and to provide Calgarians with an affordable place to enjoy creative arts. Beyond theatre productions, they also provide a drama education program.
Where: Pumphouse Theatre
Address: 2140 Pumphouse Ave SW, Calgary, AB
Quest Theatre was co-founded by Duval Lang and Rick McNair in the summer of 1984, and they have been dedicated to inspiring young audiences through adventures in theatre ever since. Originally, Quest Theatre developed as a school touring company, but now they offer drama camps, artist-in-school residencies, and an international touring repertoire. Because Quest Theatre is passionate that all children should experience the wonderful benefits of theatre, they are dedicated to doing theatre FOR children and WITH children.
Where: cSPACE King Edward
Address: 1721 – 29 Ave SW, Calgary, AB
Join Stage West for the children’s version of dinner theatre. Dining out and kids don’t always go together like fries and gravy but throw in some singing, dancing and musical theatre you’ll find your whole family will have fun. For starters, Stage West displays an incredible “kids buffet” complete with all the favourites … hot dogs, pizza, Jell-O, ice cream and much more. The buffet is then followed by a live child-oriented performance with plenty of humour for parents as well.
Where: Stage West Theatre
Address: 727 42 Ave SE, Calgary, AB
StoryBook Theatre Calgary is one of Canada’s largest Theatres for Young Audiences. They have been delighting children of all ages for over 40 years with their charming performances and talented pool of actors. It has expanded to two locations: the Beddington Theatre Arts Centre, as well as sharing ArtsCommons space with Vertigo theatre. StoryBook Theatre will be able to bring audiences an expanded roster of drama productions suitable for the whole family.
StoryBook Theatre has also partnered with Inside Out Theatre’s Good Host program to facilitate “relaxed performances” for shows during its upcoming season. These will welcome audience members who will benefit from a more relaxed atmosphere, including new parents with small babies, patrons with sensory issues such as autism or dementia, and anyone who would benefit from a more inclusive and relaxed theatre-going experience. Small modifications are made to the production to help reduce anxiety and may include: reducing the volume of loud noises and effects, reducing or eliminating strobe effects, and keeping the lights in the audience slightly brighter in case a patron needs to leave the theatre. Most importantly, everyone is welcome to do whatever they have to do to be able to enjoy the play; to make some noise, move around a bit, or leave the theatre and take a break in the chill room. StoryBook theatre wishes to make their performances as inclusive and enjoyable for everyone as possible.
Where: Beddington Heights Theatre
Address: 375 Bermuda Drive NW, Calgary AB
(Arts Commons Location: Engineered Air Theatre – 205 8 Ave SE, Calgary, AB
Theatre Calgary is a premier theatre company in Calgary, performing numerous shows every season. Primarily an adult theatre, there are some shows, such as A Christmas Carol, and anything that is advertised specifically as ‘for the whole family,’ that kids would enjoy. You would be the best judge of whether your child is interested and able to enjoy the production, but the sales staff are happy to advise you if you desire. Theatre Calgary also produces Shakespeare by the Bow, an outdoor theatre festival starring emerging artists that plays every summer on Prince’s Island Park.
Where: Max Bell Theatre at Arts Commons
Address: 205 8 Avenue SE, Calgary AB
The Y Stage Theatre for Kids, formally connected with the Vertigo Theatre Society, has been closed. The Vertigo Theatre Society announced the end with the 2016-17 season. Vertigo Theatre is still offering theatre productions, of course, some of which may be enjoyed by older kids.
Vertigo Theatre is located at the base of the Calgary Tower, and is home to the BD&P Mystery Theatre Series, which began with Agatha Christie’s classic, The Mousetrap, and plays such classics as Sherlock Holmes.
Where: Vertigo Theatre Studio
Address: 115 – 9 Avenue SE, Calgary AB