4 Of Our Favorite Intimate Concert Venues In The Middle Of America

Arenas will continue to sell out for big-name acts this summer, but let’s not forget music’s hidden gems: mid-sized venues. Thankfully, you’ll find many unique venues in the Middle of America that allow concert junkies to get their fix while seeing their favorite acts in the most intimate of spaces.

Keep reading for the rundown of accessible venues to keep in mind for your concert repertoire this summer.

St. Louis, MO: The Pageant
Originally erected as The Pageant Theatre in 1915, St. Louis’ most esteemed mid-size venue opened its doors to concertgoers as the renovated 2,300-capacity Pageant in 2000. The Pageant is conveniently situated in the Delmar Loop, where you can easily enjoy a great shared-plates dinner at Público and drinks on the roof of the Moonrise Hotel before walking over to catch a show. Whether you’re a balcony-sitter or a floor-viewer, any view is a great one in The Pageant: all seats are no farther than 70 feet from the stage.
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Even more intimate: Delmar Hall, The Pageant’s sister venue, is newly opened and is right next door to its larger sibling. Check out upcoming acts like Saint Motel, Bleachers and more this summer.
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Ryman Auditorium_Credit - Ryman Auditorium

Photo credit: Ryman Auditorium

Nashville, TN: Ryman Auditorium
How about spending the evening in the space that gave birth to bluegrass? Or where Johnny Cash infamously met June Carter? That would lead you to Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium, which underwent a full renovation in the ’90s to become the popular venue as it stands now, hosting the likes of Coldplay, Taylor Swift, The Avett Brothers and more. The design of the auditorium offers exceptional listening and holds a capacity of 2,300 music-lovers.
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Even more intimate: Consider checking out Marathon Music Works, one of the newest venues in Nashville’s popular Marathon Village neighborhood. The venue is housed in a renovated warehouse space, complete with all the rustic touches you’d expect and a full bar for attendees to enjoy.
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Aragon Ballroom_Credit - ChicagoMusic.com

Photo credit: chicagomusic.com

Chicago, IL: Aragon Ballroom
Built in 1926, Chicago’s iconic Aragon Ballroom doesn’t go lightly on all of the little details: a crystal chandelier adorns its ceiling, along with mosaic tiles in eye-catching hues that cover the walls. The 5,000-capacity venue has hosted the likes of Green Day and The xx, and will soon see Phoenix, All Time Low and more take the stage.
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Even more intimate: Lincoln Hall is one of the Windy City’s most-renowned small venues, located in the heart of Lincoln Park. Hungry before a show? You’re in luck. The venue features an on-site restaurant, Schubas, which serves up some of the best bar fare in the neighborhood.
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Crossroads KC_Credit - Crossroads

Photo credit: Crossroads KC

Kansas City, MO: Crossroads
There’s nothing quite like an evening spent outdoors reveling in the sounds of live music, and Crossroads in Kansas City offers an alternative to the typical seated amphitheater. The outdoor music space feels more like a festival experience, complete with easily accessible food and beverage vendors to satisfy those cravings that always pop up between acts.
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Even more intimate: We all have that friend whose taste in music is hard to pin down, and The Riot Room is that friend. This 600-capacity venue and beer emporium hybrid hosts acts that run the musical gamut, from metal to hip-hop, indie rock and folk.
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