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Discover the musical scene of Highlands, North Carolina, from the renowned Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival to operatic elegance at Bel Canto Recitals, the town resonates with cultural richness. Enjoy free outdoor concerts like Friday Night Live and Saturdays on Pine featuring diverse music styles or explore musical havens like the Ugly Dog Pub and The Highlander Mountain House. From music festivals to small musical gatherings, Highlands offers a rich and diverse music scene for you to enjoy.

Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival has earned an international reputation for the caliber of its artists and quality of its programs, a reputation honed by 39 years of performances. Make your plans now for a season of Chamber Music at its best! For more information, click here. 

The Bel Canto Recitals are a September tradition on the Plateau. Every year, world-famous opera stars perform classics and Broadway favorites before a select audience.

To contact Bel Canto and get on the mailing list, send your contact information to Bel Canto Recital, P.O. Box 2392, Highlands, NC 28741 or call The Bascom at (828) 787-2867.

And the Highlands Performing Arts Center, downtown Highlands, screens live performances of the Metropolitan Opera and Britain’s National Theatre.

If you’re seeking a different sort of summer sound, consider the Friday Night Live and Saturdays on Pine Concert Series, both ranging from May to October. These free concerts offer the chance to hear some of the finest music our region has to offer.

Friday Night Live concerts take place at Highlands Town Square. Friday Night Live features traditional mountain music, and an opportunity for the audience to participate by singing, clapping, tapping your feet, or dancing if the mood strikes.  It’s audience participation as it’s best and the bands feed off the energy.   

Saturdays on Pine are at Kelsey-Hutchinson Founders Park on Pine Street. Saturdays on Pine continue that sweet Highlands evening sound with a variety of music including Rock, Blues, Beach music and much more. Bring your chairs and picnic dinner from one of our many fine restaurants or make your own by visiting our local grocery stores. It’s an evening of immersion into small town community life and friendship.

The same magic that’s drawn artists to Highlands since its inception has worked upon musicians as well.   Need proof? Stop in some evening at The Ugly Dog Pub, or The High Dive, or the Hummingbird Lounge and Wine Garden at Old Edwards Inn. These places are famous for their musical guests and their work resonates in hearts and minds long after the venue’s closed for the night.  

Bluegrass has its roots in these mountains and for a surprising expression of it, attend the 9 a.m. Sunday Service at Highlands United Methodist Church.

The Highlands Performing Arts Center offers a full slate of concerts by nationally recognized artists and bands for the public. In addition, it screens concerts by the Metropolitan Opera. These concerts are open to the public. For information or reservations visit highlandspac.net.

Of course, if hearing live music makes you want to dance make a point to attend the Highlands Chamber of Commerce’s Outdoor Summer Concert Series – Friday Night Live and Saturdays on Pine.