Know Before You Show: Fonda Theatre

Starting this month, we’ll be highlighting our favorite venues in Los Angeles and the things you need to know about them, as well as some advice on what to do when trying to do more around the area than catch a show. This is Know Before You Show: the Fonda Theatre edition.

The Fonda Theatre has been around since the 1920s — originally built as Carter De Haven’s Music Box and was also previously known as The Henry Fonda Theatre and The Music Box. The venue was taken over by Goldenvoice in 2012 and re-opened.┬áThe venue itself is beautiful. The cavernous feeling of the place is enhanced by the detail of the walls and ceilings.

I’ve seen upwards of 40 shows at the Fonda Theatre since moving to LA in 2014 and it’s easily one of my favorite venues in Los Angeles. You can always count on the Fonda to get some massive underplays — the Rolling Stones, Tom Petty, Thom Yorke, and Yeah Yeah Yeahs are among some of the names who have chosen the venue to play intimate gigs just in the last few years. The venue includes a standing-room only floor section and balcony seating up top for a total capacity of 1,350.

Not super stoked on the opening act? The Fonda Theatre also features a sweet upstairs rooftop section with comfortable seating and its own bar. It’s a good place to catch a smoke and some fresh LA air while waiting for your favorite band to take the stage. They even show what’s happening on stairs on a projection on the wall, so you can catch that opening act without jonesing for a cigarette. One tip — get your 21+ wristband as you enter the venue, there is nowhere else to get them and they’ll make you head to the front of the venue to get it.

So you’ve got your tickets to a show at the Fonda Theatre — now you’re trying to figure out what to do in the area. Jesse Hom-Dawson is the managing editor of The Clever Root and I trust her knowledge of the best eats and drink in LA more than anyone. Read her recommendations on what to do near the Fonda Theatre below by using the interactive map. Click the location marker for each spot to read Jesse’s recommendations, and follow more of her food adventures on Instagram!

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Check out some photos of the Fonda Theatre below, and some of our favorite reviews of shows at the Fonda Theatre at the bottom of this page.

Here’s a schedule of some great shows coming up at the Fonda Theatre


K. Flay, Sir Sly prove merit as alt-rock’s future at Fonda

Tennis put #RelationshipGoals on full display at Fonda Theatre

Yeah Yeah Yeahs prove they still got it at Fonda Theatre

Mitski puts Fonda Theatre crowd in their feels

MUNA, Grace Mitchell dazzle at Fonda Theatre

Clean Bandit, Zara Larsson slay at the Fonda Theatre

Words by Mark Ortega and Jesse Hom-Dawson