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Music, Arts, and Culture

Aspen's arts & culture institutions were developed alongside the ski lifts, back in the late 1940s. The town's modern-day founders--Elizabeth and Walter Paepcke--envisioned Aspen as a destination for renewing the mind, body, and spirit; their concept was called The Aspen Idea.

The Aspen Idea was the driving force behind the inception of the Aspen Institute and the Aspen Music Festival & School as well as many of the world-renowned arts and cultural organizations created throughout the following decades.

Today, Aspen's arts scene thrives, with more music, dance, theatre, art, and public discourse events than any one person could attend. We have listed some of our favorite cultural offerings below, and our Events Calendar highlights the marquee festivals and events throughout the year.

COVID-19 UPDATE: Aspen's arts & cultural organizations have been affected by restrictions on special events and gathers. During summer 2020, Aspen's festivals and special events have been cancelled. Check our Events section for the most up-to-date information on what's happening in town this summer.

Let us offer recommendations

Our Concierge Team is eager to give additional recommendations about which recurring events or special festivals you might enjoy based on your interests.

Displaying 1 - 10 of 13
Anderson Ranch Arts Center Things to do in aspen
(970) 923-3181
The Anderson Ranch Arts Center celebrates art in all its form. With workshops covering such topics as sculpture, ceramics, painting, and more as well as artists-in-residence programs and gallery exhibits, Anderson Ranch is an ambitious proponent for art.
Aspen Art Museum things to do in aspen
(970) 925-8050
COVID-19 UPDATE: The Aspen Art Museum reopens on July 1, 2020 with new safety measures in place. Hourly entries will be limited to 50 people with only 25% occupancy at any time. Group sizes are limited to six people. Walk-in visitors will be permitted as capacity allows, but it is...
(970) 925-6882
Aspen Film presents the 40th Aspen Filmfest, September 23-29, 2019. The highly anticipated previews and award-winning features with panel discussions will inspire and entertain.
aspen ideas fest aspen institute things to do in aspen
(970) 925-7010
The Aspen Institute is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering enlightened leadership and open-minded dialogue. Through seminars, policy programs, conferences and leadership development initiatives, the Institute and its international partners seek to promote nonpartisan inquiry and an appreciation for timeless values.
Aspen Music Festival and School
(970) 925-9042
Founded during the same era as Aspen's ski areas, the Aspen Music Festival and School has brought high culture to the high country for nearly seven decades. The summer season runs for eight weeks and includes more than 400 classical music events attended by more than 100,000 audience members.
(970) 925-7175
To see art in motion, catch a performance by Aspen Santa Fe Ballet featuring an adventurous repertoire by top choreographers and virtuoso dancers.
(970) 925-3122
As one of the nation's most prestigious literary workshop and festival, the celebration lasts six days in Aspen each year.
Chris Cornell at the Belly Up Aspen
(970) 544-9800
With a capacity of just 450 guests, Belly Up Aspen is a renowned, intimate venue that hosts top headliners for concerts year-round. A night out on the town is not complete without attending a concert at the Belly Up!
Jazz Aspen Snowmass
(866) 527-8499
Jazz Aspen Snowmass presents incredible performances throughout the year, from the intimate JAS Cafe performances at venues throughout town to the true festival experiences afforded by the JAS June Experience and JAS Labor Day Experience.
(970) 923-8898
The Snowmass Rodeo is the longest running rodeo in Colorado. This authentic western event takes place every Wednesday evening as the sun sets behind the surrounding mountain peaks.