Please enjoy the “Artists & Productions” timeline documenting performances held at the famous performance hall. As research proceeds, the list will continue to be updated. Everyone is invited to share information, such as ticket stubs, images, posters or other items that could verify productions or events. Feel free to contact and or share details by emailing ([email protected]).

Artists & Productions

1929: Opening Ceremonies for the public auditorium and war memorial are held.

1930s: Mae West in “Diamond Lil” the stage play

1931:   Sergei Rachmaninoff 

1931:   Lawrence Tibbett & Stewart Willie

1933:   Ignace Paderewski

1934:   George Gershwin

1935:   Ethel Barrymore, George M. Cohan and Helen Hays

1937 – 1946:  Louisville Civic Orchestra 

1939:   Gladys Swarthout

1939:   Marian Anderson

1939:  Maxine Sullivan and Her Broadway Show

1939:  Harlan Leonard and His Orchestra

1939:   Sue Hastings’ Marionettes

1943:  William G. Meyer Presents Jose’ Iturbi

1943:   Boris Karloff in Arsenic and Old Lace

1943: The General Platoff: Don Cossack Chorus

1943: Charles L. Wagner Presents FAUST: An Opera in Four Acts

1944:  Philadelphia Opera Company Presents “The Bat”

1944:  4th War Loan Revue and Radio Broadcast WHAS

1944:  St. X Music Department’s Band Concert & Minstrel Show 

1945:  Louisville Girls High School Commencement

1948:   Arthur Rubenstein

1948:  Gladys Swarthoust

1948:  Jean Parker 

1948:  Lon Chaney

1948 – 1958:  Louisville Philharmonic Society

1948-2019:  The Thoroughbreds

1950: Judith Evelyn in “A Street Car Names Desire” stage play

1953:  South Pacific

1954: The King and I

  • Patricia Morison
  • Leonard Graves
  • Terry Saunders

1954 – 1974:  WHAS Crusade for Children 1954- 1974 (order of appearance)

  • Pat O’Brien and Pedro Gonzalez
  • Don Cherry
  • Eydie Gorme
  • Professor Backwards (Jimmy Edmonson)
  • Rosemary DeCamp
  • Hal Leroy
  • Leo Carrillo
  • Ish Kabibble
  • Cab Calloway
  • Steve Lawrence
  • Captain Kangaroo
  • Zippy the Chimp
  • Homer and Jethro
  • Sergeant Preston (Richard Simmons)
  • Jonah Jones
  • Jimmy Nelson
  • Marvin Miller
  • Bobby Hackett
  • Gretchen Wyler
  • Lee Marvin
  • Peg Leg Bates
  • Popeye
  • Dick Roman
  • Molly Bee
  • John Bubbles
  • Johnny Nash
  • The Eddie Heywood Trio
  • Buffalo Bill
  • The Chipmunks
  • Cozy Cole
  • Henry “Red” Allen
  • The Irvin Twins
  • June Valli
  • Johnny Johnson
  • Don Goldie
  • Jack Haskell
  • Bobby Lewis
  • Doc Severinsen
  • Grady Nutt
  • Paula Wayne
  • Clark Terry and Marilyn Maye
  • Johnny Hartman
  • Jo Ann Hale
  • Linda Bennett
  • Judy Marshall
  • Sherry Sizemore
  • Diana Trask
  • Hal Frazier
  • Bobby Lewis
  • Chuck Woolery
  • Merv Griffin
  • Clyde McCoy
  • Urbie Green
  • Frank Linkenberg
  • No national entertainers participated in Crusade 19 ( 1972 )
  • Marla Adams
  • McLean Stevenson
  • Jo Anne Worley
  • Tommy Leonetti
  • Mary Stuart
  • Arnie Lawrence

1955:   Norman Ganz’ Jazz at the Philharmonic, Featuring:

  • Ella Fitzgerald
  • The Gene Krupa Quartet
  • Buddy Rich
  • Lester Young
  • Dizzy Gillespie
  • Oscar Peterson
  • Flip Eldridge
  • Illinois Jacquet
  • Ray Brown
  • Herb Ellis

1957:  Bill Haley and His Comets

1956:  The Modern Jazz Quartet

1959:  The Crickets, Dion & The Belmonts, Jimmy Clanton, Frankie Sardo, Frankie Avalon, Fabian  (Buddy Holly scheduled to perform on February 11, 1959, but died in a plane crash on February 3, 1959)

1959:   Fabian

1959:  Frankie Sardo

1959:  Jimmy Clanta

1960:  World of Suzie Wong

1960:  “The Chuckles of 1960,” county teenage talent show featuring original song and dance acts with a Melange and Modern Vaudeville theme.  

1962:  Dave Brubeck

1964:  Tickets to the Rolling Stones show cost $4. (Collectors today are offering $5,000 for the show’s poster)

1966:  Lovin’ Spoonful

1969: Derby Jazz Festival: Featuring Eddie Harris for Bennett Higgins & Crisis

Mid-70s:  The new Louisville Ballet begins performing

1972: Roberta Flack

1972:  Hollies & Raspberries with Danny O’ Keefe

1973:  Super Session featuring Mike Bloomfield & Friends

1973: Slade & Marshall Tucker Band

1974:  Aerosmith

1974:  Ted Nugent & The Amboy Dukes

1974:  Irish Rovers

1974:  Shawn Phillips

1974:  Elephant’s Memory

1975:  Alice Cooper

1975:  Jimmy Buffett

1975:  John Prine

1975:   Kiss and Rush

1976:  John Mellencamp & Tiger Force

1977:  Supertramp

1977:  Billy Joel

1977:  The Babys, Piper

1977:  Burton Cummings

1977:  Weather Report & Al Di Meola

1977:  David Allan Coe

1978:  U.K.

1978:  Leon Redbone & Tom Waits

1978:  Midnight Star

1978:  Cactus with Bob Seger

1978:  The Outlaws, Travers Band, Head East

1978:  Starz

1978:  Ramsey Lewis

1978:   Patti Smith Group performs.

1978:  Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

1978:  Martin Mull

1978:   Mikhail Baryshnikov performs with the Louisville Ballet.

1978:  Tom Waits

1979:  Triumph

1979:  Elvis Costello & The Attractions, The Robinoos

1979:  Alex Bevan, Phoebe Snow

1979:  Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, The Fabulous Poodles

1980:   The Peking Opera performs

1980:  Robert Palmer

1980:  The Pretenders

1981:  Leon Russell & New Grass Revival

1981:  Boxcar Willie with Robyn Young & Allen McCoy

1982:  UFO and Saxon

1982:  Rainbow, Iron Maiden, 38 Special

1983:   The ballet leaves for the new Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts.

1983:  Servant, DeGarmo & Key, Randy Matthews

1984 -1985: Ebony Fashion Fair

1985:  Steve Taylor

1986:  Stryper

1986:  Arlo Guthrie and John Price

1986:  REM

1986:  Michael W. Smith

1989:  John Prine & David Bromberg

1989:  Violent Femmes

1989:  Petra

1996:   Poet Ron Whitehead hosts the Official Hunter S. Thompson Tribute. Johnny Depp, Roxanne Pulitzer and David Amram attend. Writer Paul McDonald says, “It was a wild evening” and that Thompson was “blasting anyone within close range with a fire extinguisher.”

1996:  Warren Zevon

1997:  Ani DiFranco

2004:   Shelly Garrett’s “Beauty Shop: Under New Management”

2010:  University of Louisville National Pan-Hellenic Council’s Annual “Homecoming Step  Show”

2010:  Miss Kentucky Teen USA and Miss Kentucky USA Pageants

2016-2019:  Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker

2018-2019:   Stage One Family Theatre Presents “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” & “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing”

2018:   State Ballet Theatre of Russia’s Swan Lake

2019: Louisville Children’s Film Festival presented premiere of “Through the Rainbow,” award-winning and popular short film from the “Children’s Film Festival Seattle.”

2019:  Honor Flight Bluegrass Presents WWII 75th D-Day Celebration Concert

2019:  Louisville Chorus

2020:  The auditorium hosts professional boxing for the first time with Carlos Dixon, WBC Youth Super Featherweight

2021: WLOU 104.7 Father’s Day Concert featuring Delfonics, The Ultimate Show Band  (Don Wright, Robin Shaw, Jocque Smith & Bennie Jay).

2021: Louisville Chorus performs a memorial concert honoring 20th Anniversary Tribute of 9/11 on Saturday, September 11, 2021.

2021: Kids Art Academy Tiny Tykes and Youth Repertory Troupe perform “A Tale of Two Plays (Goldilocks on Trial & The Little Mermaid Jr.).

2021: TRANSITION the Stage Play premieres in Louisville with two performances of the production by Director/Actor Angelo Robinson.

2021: Kentucky Muscle Championships, a top-rated IFBB PRO event with world-class competitors, participated to qualify for the 2022 Olympia Competition.

2021: “A Night of Soul” concert starring Freddie Jackson with Shirley Murdock, Keyona LaShawn and The Sheryl Rouse Band.

2021:  “Justice on Trial: The Stage Play” produced by Chad Lawson Cooper and Harry Lennix features Alan Conley, Alicia Robinson Cooper, Troy Escoda, Jeff Majors, Leofric Thomas.

2021:  “It’s A Pilcher Pipe Organ Holiday Concert” featuring award-winning organist Margaret Dickison with Tim Jones, Timothy Baker and David Pilkinton playing seasonal arrangements on the World’s Largest Pipe Organ.

2021:  “Christmas Wonderland” was presented by LMPD Resources Officers for students and their families attending local schools.  Timothy Baker played a festive arrangement on the World’s Largest Pilcher Pipe Organ” followed by Presentation Academy’s Pres Girl Choir who performed a holiday concert with special guest, Santa Claus.

2022:  Songwriter Shadwick Wilde and his band Quiet Hollers shot the music video for their fourth studio album at the auditorium.  The uniqueness of the historic performance hall provided a background for “Addicted,” featuring Scott Carney of Wax Fang on the Theremin, who also directed the video.

2022: “A NIght of Soul” returns with The Whispers and Sheryl Rouse for an evening of class.

2022: “CloZet Confessions: The Stage Play” premieres with a memorable performance. Award-winning producer and playwright, Renza Yarbrough-Bing also stars in the visionary production.

2022: Mary B. Bauer Memorial Service honoring years of support for the Picher Pipe Organ

2022: Miss Black Kentucky USA Pageant

2022: Kentucky Muscle Fitness Contest returns for another competition year.

2022: Highlands Latin School production of “Our Town” for series of public performances

2022: Carmichael Bookstore Author Series (Diary of a Wimpy Kid Family Concert)

2022: University of Louisville / Phi Kappa Tau – Talent Show Fundraiser

2022: Simmons College Homecoming Talent Show and Concert

2022: Telugu Association of Kentuckiana “Diwalisambaraalu” Annual Festival

2022: Peabo Bryson and Friends Concert

2022: Performing Arts Louisville presents production of “Holiday Whobee Whatee”

2022: Pilcher Pipe Organ Holiday Concert by Organist Tim Baker with Silent Movie

2022: Stephanie Mills featuring After 7 New Year’s Pre-Eve Concert

2023: Napoleon Dynamite: A Conversation & Movie Presentation with Jon Heder, Efren Ramierz & Jon Gries

2023: NPC Kentucky Cup Fitness Competition

Historic Timeline