If you’re like me and want to experience Spoleto Festival USA and Piccolo Spoleto but want to do so without breaking the bank, we’re both in luck!
Spoleto has a few shows that offer tickets for $20 or less, the low end of the spectrum, but take note that the seats often have limited visibility. Unless otherwise noted, these events are at the Gaillard Auditorium, 77 Calhoun St. Here are your options:
“Return to the Sea: Saltworks by Motoi Yamamoto” is free to view at The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, 161 Calhoun St., Friday-July 13.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has tickets for $20 for the 7 p.m. Friday, 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday shows.
Virginia Rodrigues belts it out at 7 p.m. Monday with tickets as low as $15.
Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet offers $20 shows at 7 p.m. June 1 and 2 p.m. June 2.
“Orchestra Uncaged” offers $20 seats at 8 p.m. June 3 at the College of Charleston’s Sottile Theatre, 44 George St.
Choral/Orchestral Concert offers $10 and $20 seats at 7:30 p.m. June 5.
Spoleto Festival USA Orchestra will entertain you for $10 or $20 at 7:30 p.m. June 8.
Your money will get you even further with the Piccolo Spoleto lineup. With more than 700 events, there are numerous shows that are $20 or under, not to mention many that are free. You read that right, FREE!
Keep in mind that as there are so many options, we’ve had to limit what’s included in this list. Check out the other budget-conscious shows at www.piccolospoleto.com. Here’s what Piccolo Spoleto has to offer:
The free Sunset Serenade Concert kicks things off at 8 p.m. Friday at the Customhouse at Concord and Market streets.
Hit up a glorified Charleston Farmers Market for free Saturday and Sunday, June 2-3 and June 9. Visit Marion Square 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Saturdays and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sundays.
A free Children’s Festival will be 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday at Marion Square.
The Charleston County Public Library, 68 Calhoun St., will hold a series of free Children’s Programs at the Library: “The Velveteen Rabbit” at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Tuesday; Lunch Money performs at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Wednesday; “Little Red Riding Hood” becomes an opera at 9:15 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. May 31; “Chicken Little” at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. June 5; Japanese drummers perform at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. June 6; “Hansel and Gretel” comes to life with marionettes at 9:15 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. June 7.
A free Concert in the Park will be 7-10 p.m. June 1 at Allan Park on Ashley Avenue, between Huger and Congress streets.
The Piccolo Spoleto Intern Block Party is a free family-friendly event that will be 6-10 p.m. June 2 at Marion Square.
The free Piccolo Spoleto Festival Finale will be 5- 9:30 p.m. June 9 at Hampton Park, 30 Mary Murray Blvd.
For $16, check out these Dance at Noon performances at Footlight Players Theatre, 20 Queen St.: Elite Dance International Studio on Wednesday, Muses of Modern Dance on June 1, the Robert Ivey Ballet on June 2, Fau Repertory dance Theatre Ensemble on June 3, Gathering Wild Dance Company on June 4.
Attend the Dance Festival 11 a.m.-2 p.m. June 5 at Footlight Players Theatre, 20 Queen St. for $8.
Check out the free American Film Series at the Charleston County Public Library, 68 Calhoun St. Films start at 1 p.m.: “Rear Window” on Friday, “Citizen Kane” on Tuesday, “Raging Bull” on Wednesday, “The Shawshank Redemption” on May 31, “Brave-heart” on June 1, “Best Years of Our Lives” on June 4, “Godfather Part II” on June 5, “Network” on June 6, “Hoop Dreams” on June 7, “The Philadelphia Story” on June 8.
Watch “La Traviata” in HD live from The Metropolitan Opera for free at the Charleston County Public Library, 68 Calhoun St. at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Check out five South Carolina writers as they present five-minute “short short” stories from 5-7 p.m. June 2 at Blue Bicycle Books, 420 King St. A reception will follow this free event.
The Charleston Library Society, 164 King St., hosts the Piccolo Spoleto Literary Festival at 3 p.m. Monday-June 1. Admission is $16 and events are followed by book signings.
The Dock Street Theatre Courtyard, 133 Church St., hosts the free Piccolo Spoleto Sundown Poetry Series Monday-June 1, June 4-8 at 6:30 p.m.
The Hippodrome, 360 Concord St., will host a $16 jazz series. Shows are 7-9 p.m.: Ann Caldwell on Sunday; Modus Bone with Mitch Butler on June 1; Salute to Miles Davis on June 4, this show is 8-10 p.m.; Pulse Trio plays new standards on June 7, this show is 9-11 p.m.; Lonnie Hamilton Quintet featuring Quiana Parler on June 8.
First (Scots) Presbyterian Church, 53 Meeting St., will host the Early Music Series. Shows are at 3 p.m. and admission costs $16: Bach Cello Suites on Friday, Splendors of the Baroque on Saturday, Vivaldi on Fire on Sunday, Bach’s Violin Concertos on Monday, Bach Cello Suites on Tuesday, Baroque Banquet on Wednesday, Dazzling Baroque on May 31, Venetian Carnival on June 1, Crossing to the New World on June 2, An Afternoon of Gospel Music — We Be Brethren on June 3, The Glories of the Baroque on June 4, Northern Lights on June 5, La Suave Melodia on June 6, Fresh Ayre on June 7, Mediterranean Odyssey on June 8, Handel’s Heroes, Jose Lemos on June 10.
Theatre 99, 280 Meeting St., hosts the $16 Piccolo Fringe: The Have Nots! Comedy Improv Company will perform 8:30 p.m. May 26 and June 8, 7 p.m. May 27 and 9:30 p.m. June 9; Frankenmatt Presents “American Imperil” at 10 p.m. May 25, 10:30 p.m. May 26-27, 8:30 p.m. May 28, 30-31, 9 p.m. June 1, 7 p.m. June 2; The Complete History of Charleston for Morons at 7 p.m. May 25 and 31, 4 p.m. May 26-27 and June 2, 3 p.m. June 3; Reformed … at 7 p.m. May 26, 5:30 p.m. May 27, 7 p.m. May 28, 10 p.m. May 30; Mary Kay has a Posse at 8:30 p.m. May 25, 5:30 p.m. May 26 and June 2, 9 p.m. May 27, 8:30 p.m. June 7; GLOC (Gorgeous Ladies of Comedy) Live at 9 p.m. May 29, 10 p.m. May 31, 10:30 p.m. June 1; The Holy Land Experience at 7 p.m. May 30 and June 6, 4 p.m. June 9, a 7:30 p.m. June 2 and 9:30 p.m. June 8 show will be held at Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84½ Society St.; Upright Citizens Brigade Touring Company at 10:30 p.m. June 2, and 8, 8:30 p.m. June 3 and 6, 9 p.m. June 4, 10 p.m. June 5, 7:30 p.m. June 9; Improv Riot at 7 p.m. June 1, 8:30 p.m. June 2; One-Man Star Wars at 5 p.m. June 3, 7 p.m. June 5 and 7-8, 6 p.m. June 4 and 9; The Shock T’s at 7 p.m. June 3, 7:30 p.m. June 4, 8:30 p.m. June 5; The Two-Man Movie at 10 p.m. June 6-7; 5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche at 7:30 p.m. May 29, 9:30 p.m. June 1-2, 7 and 9, this show is at Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84½ Society St.; Dinner with the Elams at 7:30 p.m. June 5, this show is at Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84 ½ Society St.; Big Dictionary, Doppelganger, and Cats Hugging Cats at 9:30 p.m. May 26 at Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84 ½ Society St.; Neckprov, Hot Pants and Moral Fixation at 7 p.m. May 29; Human Fireworks, Little Miss Codependent and Full Love Throttle at 7:30 p.m. June 4 at Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84 ½ Society St.
The Charleston Acting Studio, 915 Folly Road, James Island, will host Broadway Babies at noon May 26 and June 9, 1 p.m. May 27-28, 5 p.m. June 1-2 and 8, 4 p.m. June 6-7, admission is $13.
Sprouts Children’s Theatre and Creative Spark Center for the Arts, 757 Long Point Road, Mount Pleasant, will present Cinderella at 7 p.m. June 1 and 8, 1 p.m. June 2 and 9-10, 3 p.m. June 3 and 10, tickets are $11 in advance.
Dinner with Friends will be presented by Threshold Repertory Theatre, 84½ Society St., for $19 at 7:30 p.m. June 7-9.
Celebrate the 100th birthday of master blacksmith Philip Simmons at 2 p.m. June 9-10 at St. John’s Reformed Episcopal Church, 91 Anson St., admission is $11.
Gage Hall, 4 Archdale St., will hold Sacred Harp Singing, a free event 10 a.m.-noon and 2-4 p.m. Participation is encouraged; for an introduction, show up at 8:30 a.m. or 1:30 p.m.
St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church Auditorium, 1 Vanderhorst St., will host Piccolo Spoleto Rising Stars at 4 p.m. May 28, 30, June 1, 4, 6 and 8. Admission is $6.
Simons Center for the Arts, Recital Hall, 54 St. Philip St., will host the Young Artist Series at the College of Charleston. Concerts begin at noon and admission is $11: Tangos, Spanish and Latin Music for Piano and Strings on May 26; College of Charleston Concert Choir on May 28, this show is at the Cathedral Church of St. Luke and St. Paul, 126 Coming St.; guitarist Marco Sartor, plus Music for Cello and Piano on May 29; Gershwin, Paganini Variations and other Showpieces for One and Two Pianos on May 30; All-Rachmaninoff Piano Recital on May 31; The Art of the Song: Prize Winning Singers on June 1; Rhapsody in Blue, Petrouchka Suite and other Piano Blockbusters on June 2; Virtuoso Violin Recital: the Studio of Lee-Chin Siow performs on June 4; Opera and Oratorio Arias on June 5; Singers go Baroque!: Vocal Music from the Time of Bach and Handel on June 6; Excerpts from Favorite Piano Concertos by Mozart, Grieg and Tchaikovsky on June 7; Mozart’s First Opera!: Bastien and Bastienne (concert version in English) on June 8; Concertos and Solo works by Chopin and Prokofieff on June 9.
Admission to the Youth Music Festival is free: Carolina String Academy at Ashley Hall at 4:30 p.m. May 30 at Trinity United Methodist Church, 273 Meeting St.; Charleston Academy of Music at 5:30 p.m. May 27 at Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St.; Charleston Children’s Chorus at 4:30 p.m. May 27 at Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St.; Charlotte Children’s Choir and youth Chorale at 2 p.m. May 26 at Bethel United Methodist Church, 57 Pitt St.; Chattanooga Boys Choir at 4:30 p.m. June 8 at Circular Congregational Church, 150 Meeting St.; Chicora Voices at 3 p.m. June 6 at Bethel United Methodist Church, 57 Pitt St.; Girls’ Choir of Wilmington at 2:30 p.m. May 27 at Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St.; Concert Choir of the Jacksonville Children’s Chorus at 2 p.m. June 8 at Circular Congregational Church, 150 Meeting St.; Northside Young Singers at 1:30 p.m. at Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St.; Panjamdrum at noon June 9 at Circular Congregational Church, 150 Meeting St.; Providence High School Honors Chamber Singers at noon May 26 at St. Philip’s Church, 142 Church St., suggested donation is $5; Sounds of Summit at noon June 2 at St. Philip’s Church, 142 Church St., suggested donation is $5; University Children’s Chorus at 3:30 p.m. May 27 at Second Presbyterian Church, 342 Meeting St.; Winston-Salem Youth Symphony at 4 p.m. May 26.
The free Touch of Jazz concert at Robert Mills Manor Courtyard, 20 Franklin St., will be held 5-7 p.m. May 31.
A World of Jewish Culture will hold numerous events: Admission to Starbucks Jewish Coffehouse at 9 p.m. June 2, 3 at Starbucks, 475 East Bay St., is $6; the Feature Film Series: “Three Treyf Films from Europe,” which costs $6 and airs at the New Science Center Auditorium, 202 Calhoun St., will show “The Names of Love” at 10 a.m. June 3, “The Day I Saw Your Heart” at 6 p.m. June 4 and “Strangers” at 6 p.m. June 5; the Kol Echad choir concert is $6 and will be at 1 p.m. June 3 at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, 90 Hasell St.; Paul Robeson and the Americanization of Jewish Folk Music costs $10 to attend and will be held at 3 p.m. June 3 at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, 90 Hasell St.; the 20th Century Jewish Composers Across Continents: A Chamber Music Program will be held at 5 p.m. June 3 at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, 90 Hasell St., admission is $10.
The aircraft carrier York-town, 40 Patriots Point Road, Mount Pleasant, will host the Art & Music in Times of War: “Piccolo, Patriots and Patton” will begin at 6:30 p.m. June 8, a lecture begins at 7:45 p.m., and admission is $7; the 282nd Army Band will perform at 2 p.m. May 27, the show is free with regular admission to Patriots Point ($18).
Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, 120 Broad St., will host Cathedral Music by Candlelight: Charleston Renaissance Ensemble at 10 p.m. June 9, suggested donation is $12.
The Hippodrome, 360 Concord St., will host “Charleston, a love letter” at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. May 26, tickets are $16 in advance.
Echoes of the Civil War will be held for free at 7:30 p.m. May 27 at White Point Garden on Meeting Street at South Battery.
The Gibbes Museum of Art, 135 Meeting St., will hold Illuminating the Spirit: A Conversation with Artists Mary Whyte and Jonathan Green at 11 a.m. June 4, admission is $12 in advance.
First Baptist Church, 61 Church St., will hold a free lecture on the origin of taps at 6 p.m. May 27.
A Musical Journey: From Mozart to Gershwin will be held at 5:30 p.m. May 26 at Bethany United Methodist Church, 118 W. 3rd St. South, Summerville, and at 1:30 p.m. May 27 at City Gallery at Waterfront Park, 34 Prioleau St., admission is $16.