An aerial view of the front of the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts

Raleigh's Premier Arts Venue

Set amongst the backdrop of our Capitol, the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts has stood as a historic and cultural focal point in Downtown Raleigh since 1932. It has played host to Broadway classics, rock legends and major political figures while maintaining an emphasis on education of the arts and artists housed within our own community. With four separate event spaces available, the breadth and depth of events past, present and future has made this Raleigh’s Premier Arts Venue.

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Exterior of the building


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Capacity 2369

Raleigh Memorial Auditorium

Opened in 1932, Raleigh Memorial Auditorium is the crown jewel of North Carolina performing arts. Over the years, this richly historic theater has played host to a dazzling spectrum of artists and performances. Just a sample of the list quickly becomes dizzying: Sinatra, Gillespie, Baryshnikov, Tony Bennett, Ray Charles, Sarah Vaughn, Itzhak Perlman, Natalie Cole and Prince. Broadway blockbusters like Les Misérables, The Phantom of the Opera, Disney’s The Lion King, Jersey Boys, Miss Saigon, and Rent have also been staged here.

After some dramatic renovations ranging from 1975-76, 1990, 2001, and most recently 2016, Raleigh Memorial Auditorium now blends state-of-the-art technical amenities with grand theater traditions. Stepping into the theater -- with its dramatic atrium lobby, twin floating staircases, and gorgeous Doric columns -- brings the magic and inspiration of all these artists to life for visitors.

Capacity 1750

Meymandi Concert Hall

The North Carolina Symphony calls this remarkable 1,750-seat venue home and it’s easy to see why. Its 65-ft ceiling, unique shoebox shape, narrow sides, shallow balconies and lack of proscenium all work together to deliver the warmest, clearest and most immersive sound experience possible. Meymandi Concert Hall has hosted national and international artists and performers such as; Dave Chapelle, Backstreet Boys, Merle Haggard, Carlos Mencia, Bryan Adams, and Aziz Ansari.

Capacity 600

A.J. Fletcher Opera Theater

This intimate 600-seat theater offers an unique experience perfect for ballet, opera, and concerts with the farthest balcony seat less than 70 feet from the stage. Located on the east side of the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, this unique venue is home to the Carolina Ballet. A wide variety of other performers have also been hosted here such as; Boney James, Post Modern Jukebox, Richa Sharma, and Todrick Hall.

Capacity 150

Kennedy Theatre

Our 150-seat, 40 x 60-foot black-box experimental theater fuses intimacy with energy and the deeply personal with the universal theatre experience. The Kennedy Theatre provides performance and rehearsal space for many innovative groups.

Microphones line the stage of Raleigh Memorial Auditorium as a Bluegrass bands plays

Duke Energy Center Event Spaces

Lichtin Plaza

This elegant two-acre plaza in front of the Duke Energy Center is the ideal open-air space for festivals, concerts, and tented social gatherings and functions.


The sun sets as the light fades over a garden and reflects off the buildings of Downtown Raleigh and onto the Lichtin Plaza

Martin Suite

Located in the upper lobby corners of the Duke Energy Center, these areas offer 810-square-feet of amazing space for meetings or pre- and post-show receptions.

Cocktail tables are set across the room that overlooks the Meymandi Concert Hall lobby area

Betty Ray McCain Art Gallery

This unique gallery, nestled within the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts next to Meymandi Concert Hall hosts rotating exhibitions by local artists and curators.

Hours: The Gallery can be accessed Monday - Friday 10am-2pm and during performance hours.

Multiple brightly colored taperstires hang from the walls of the Betty Ray McCain Art Gallery

Lobby Space

It's the breathtaking show before the live show. Our atrium lobby presents a stunning grandeur with its central twin floating staircases, 14 Doric columns, and a high-coffered beam ceiling. The overall impact is a professional yet introspective atmosphere, bolstered by our remarkably attentive staff. In other words, it's an ideal space for any event, no matter the scale.

Two grand chandeliers hover above twin floating staircases in the outer lobby of Raleigh Memorial Auditorium

Carolina Room

Located in the downstairs area of the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium, the Carolina Room is perfectly suited for hosting pre-show discussions or lecture series. The Carolina Room offers full amenities and an engagingly intimate atmosphere.

A large and spacious square room can be used for storage or private events