SAN ANTONIO — Sleigh bells ring... are you listenin'?
OK, so maybe it's a bit too early to full embrace the Christmas spirit, especially as San Antonio is still reaching the 90s on a daily basis. But it isn't too early to start planning for an Alamo City fall and winter that will see plenty of major performing acts coming to town, to say nothing of the local festivities, exhibits and artistry.
It's easy to get overwhelmed by all the options at your fingertips for an afternoon out with the family or a date night with your significant other. We've sifted through the exhaustive list of upcoming events to narrow things down to a handy guide of the 22 biggest happenings in San Antonio arts and entertainment, from the comedic acts to the cultural celebrations.
A massive new installation at Southtown's Ruby City is now open for visitors to see dozens of works in person, some of them on view for the first time. The ethos behind "Tangible/Nothing" is to showcase "how the invisible or the seemingly mundane can reveal great meaning," the gallery says, and to emphasize how simple sights can contain a wellspring of ideas.
"Tangible/Nothing" is now on display. Admission to Ruby City is free.
It's a show fit for south Texas, and you can catch it this month.
"Selena Maria Sings" tells the story of a young musician navigating life after the loss of her brother, while also exploring regional icon Selena Quintanilla's legacy of empowerment, individuality and creativity. It's not only a new story, but an intergenerational one written by a Corpus Christi playwright whose connection to Selena goes back to her childhood.
Running now through Oct. 2, at Magik Theatre. Tickets available here.
Contemporary hits, Christmastime fables and Tony-nominated musicals are coming to downtown over the next few months as part of the latest Broadway in San Antonio season.
It kicks off with a September run of "Hadestown," a modernization of mythical tragedies that has drawn praise and accolades across the country. Later in the year, "The Life and Times the Temptations" and "Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical" will grace the Majestic stage.
"Hadestown" runs Sept. 13 to Sept. 18; buy tickets here. "Ain't Too Proud: The Life and Times of The Temptations" runs Oct. 11 to Oct. 16; buy tickets here. "How the Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical" runs Nov. 29 to Dec. 4; tickets to go on sale later.
San Antonio is going all out for Hispanic Heritage Month, planning a month's worth of festivities ranging from culinary celebrations to musical fiestas. Families will have an opportunity to watch "La Bamba" under the stars, bring out their competitive spirit with a game or two of Loteria, check out mariachi festivals and get a taste of folklorico dance—and that's just the start.
"Fiestas Patrias" 2022 kicks off Sept. 15 and lasts until Oct. 15. Find a full rundown of events here.
Late-night cabaret shows are returning to the Woodlawn Theater this fall, giving patrons a chance to experience intimate song and dance while also helping to facilitate the organization's impending relocation to the former home of Santikos Bijous cinema at Wonderland of the Americas.
September 23, Oct. 8 and Oct. 22. Tickets can be bought at the theatre for $5.
This fall will bring the start of a historic 25th season for Musical Bridges Around the World, the San Antonio group which helps make classical music and international performance more accessible to the community.
Not all MBAW events are made equal. Case in point: The first event of the season (Sept. 25), a show combining the musical, comedic and performative talents of Duo Baldo for a dynamic night. Later concerts will bring a Slovokian quartet known for playing both classical and contemporary melodies, as well as a German vocal ensemble inspired by centuries of choral milestones.
Events on Sept. 25, Oct. 30 and Dec. 4, at San Fernando Cathedral. Admission is free, but tickets must be secured early.
The Briscoe's upcoming "A Life in the Wild" exhibit will grant visitors the opportunity to see the natural world through the eyes of Thomas Mangelsen, a renowned conservationist and photographer whose work has been showcased in the Smithsonian.
Runs Sept. 30 through Jan. 29, at the Briscoe Western Art Museum. Included with general admission.
Have you heard? The San Antonio Symphony is back... sort of.
The musicians of the defunct group have reorganized as the San Antonio Philharmonic to keep the melodies of orchestral music coming in the Alamo City. Among their announced slate of shows: Live music inspired by the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet, Tristan and Isolde, and the trajectory of American dance genres.
Visit the philharmonic's Facebook page for information on dates and ticket prices.
The arrival of the calendar's spookiest month will also bring a treat for literature fans in the Hill Country. The Boerne Book and Arts Festival is slated for Oct. 1, and will includes activities for kids, live readings and panel discussions with authors on topics ranging from the significant women of NASA to Texas myths.
Among the festival's featured guests: Austin-born fiction writer Sarah Bird; former astronaut-turned-author Eileen Collins; and Texas children's author Chris Mullen.
October 1, at Boerne's main plaza. Free to attend.
Ahead of the release of the new Hollywood movie about his life, Weird Al Yankovic will bring his satirical style and parody-rific songs to the Majestic Theatre as part of the "Unfortunate Return of the Ridiculously Self-Indulgent, Ill-Advised Vanity Tour." As appropriate a name as any for the maestro of melodic mocking.
October 4 at 7:30 p.m., at the Majestic Theater. Tickets start at $39.50.
Iconic tales meet majestic choreography when Ballet San Antonio bring "Cinderella" and "The Nutcracker" to thrilling, pirouetting life in the coming months. The latter show features dozens of local child performers taking the Tobin Center stage to tell the story of a young girl's battle against the Mouse King. (Those looking for a more interactive take on "The Nutcracker," meanwhile," should circle Nov. 19 on their calendars.)
"Cinderella" will run Oct. 14 to Oct. 16 at the Tobin, while "The Nutcracker" runs Dec. 2 to Dec. 11. Tickets for both shows start at $36.
Upcoming exhibits at two Alamo City museums will explore the parallel ripple effects and trajectories of different cultures.
At the San Antonio Museum of Art, "The Legacy of La Malinche" will feature the deepest exhibition yet curated for the eponymous La Malinche, an indigenous girl who played a key role in Cortes's conquests for Spain, laying the foundation of "global politics for centuries to come."
Over at the McNay, the experiences of Black Americans will be showcased in the exhibit "True Believers: Benny Andrews & Deborah Roberts," themed around activism, family and racial injustice.
"Traitor, Survivor, Icon: The Legacy of La Malinche" runs Oct. 14 to Jan. 8. "True Believers: Benny Andrews & Deborah Roberts" runs Oct. 6 to Jan. 22. Both exhibits are included with general admission.
An uniquely indulgent San Antonio event, the 14th annual edition of the Mole Festival, organized by Centro Cultural Aztlan, returns Oct. 20. Various local restaurants will showcase their own spin on the sauce, while hungry guests will be charged with voting for their favorite. Live music will also be on hand, as well as crafts and jewelry vendors.
October 20 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., at Centro Cultural Aztlan. Tickets are $40.
Those who have watched iconic entertainers Steve Martin and Martin Short as two-thirds of the popular "Only Murders in the Building" troupe will have a chance to laugh along with them in person. The show finds the duo poking fun at showbiz, Hollywood and each other, and will come to San Antonio in October.
October 23 at 7:30 p.m., at the Majestic. Tickets start at $69.50.
San Antonio is trying out something new with its Dia de los Muertos celebration this year, organizing a rebranded take on the holiday via the SpiritLandia River Parade, which will stream nationally. The event is set for Oct. 27, while the west side's Centro Cultural Aztlan will continue to hold its more traditional event on Nov. 2, complete with ofrendas, crafts and pan de muerto.
The 1925 silent horror film "The Phantom of the Opera" will be screened and given eerie new life through a live score by Emmy-winning organist and composer Dorothy Papadakos. Attendees are encourage to lean into the fun with costumes worthy of the Lon Chaney-starring classic.
October 28 at 7 p.m., at St. Mark's Episcopal Church. Admission will be free.
Sir Elton John, at long last, brings his prolonged "Farewell Yellow Brick Road" tour to San Antonio. The Rocket Man himself is set to take over the Alamodome Oct. 29, where thousands of Texas fans are expected to converge to remember when rock was young.
October 29 at 8 p.m., at the Alamodome. Tickets available here.
The AT&T Center crew should probably make sure the facility's ceiling is bolted down tight; it's in danger of getting blown off when Grammy-winning throwback rock 'n roll act Greta van Fleet performs there in early November. Drawing comparisons to Led Zeppelin, the Michigan-based quartet is touring following the release of their latest album, "The Battle at Garden's Gate," last year.
November 5 at 7 p.m, at the AT&T Center. Tickets available here.
Renowned comedian, popular actor and memorable awards show presenter Chris Rock will take the stage in San Antonio for not one, not two, but three nights in mid-November. The "Ego Death Tour" is his first in five years, and the first since the release of his Netflix special "Tamborine" in 2018.
November 10 to Nov. 12, at 8 p.m. each night, at the Majestic. Tickets start at $49.75.
One of the region's biggest showcases of contemporary art – an exhibit spanning dance performances, film, music, poetry, theatre and massive installations in the heart of the Alamo City – returns the evening of Nov. 19.
After setting up shop at Hemisfair the last few years, the 2022 Luminaria Contemporary Arts Festival will traverse a section of downtown stretching from the Tobin Center to Travis Park.
November 19, from 6 p.m. to midnight, downtown. Free to the public.
The Yanaguana Indian Arts Festival – featuring crafts, storytelling and live performances from indigenous cultures – returns to Briscoe on Nov. 19. Among the types of arts showcased at the family-friendly event: basket-weaving, painting, pottery, carving and cooking.
November 19, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Briscoe Western Art Museum. Free to attend.
A strong debut year for the south side's Tech Port Arena continues with two nights of head-banging, guitar-thrashing heavy metal courtesy of Judas Priest. If you think it won't be a loud time at the relatively new venue, you've got another thing comin'.
November 22 and Nov. 23, at 8 p.m., at Tech Port Center + Arena. Tickets start at $55.50.