11 OC Venues
For Kids and Teens to Perform At

Molly Webb February 28, 2019
For kids and teens growing up in Orange County with a passion for musical theatre or choral music, there are many performance outlets. You’ll find children’s theaters throughout the county and a variety of choral opportunities at local high schools. But what if you sing commercial music and want to hone your pop music performance skills? Unless you’re doing recitals at your local music school, it’s a much less obvious path to getting into it. You’ll need to be a little more of a go-getter and contact local venues (think restaurants and such) to see if they’re looking for performers. Preferably have a link to your music, like a Facebook music site, a SoundCloud, or a YouTube channel you could use as a calling card.

1. Chain Reaction

Chain Reaction, a concert hall in Anaheim, hosts an open mic night for kids ages 5-18 every month, so it’s a great place to get your feet wet if you don’t feel ready to market yourself and put a whole act together. But the venue also regularly allows young teens to perform their own set.

2. The Vault

Another great concert hall that allows teens to perform is the Vault in Orange. It’s a fun place to play a set.

3. OC Fair

If you stay on top of it and fill out their community entertainment form early, you can get up to 40 minutes for your own act! It’s such a fun place to perform. Hold off on the fried snickers bar and giant turkey leg until after you’re done.

Editorial credit: Shutterstock.com

4. Gypsy Den

With three locations in Orange County–Santa Ana, Costa Mesa, and Anaheim, Gypsy Den is a favorite for local performers. If you’re looking to just try out a song, an open mic night might be for you, but if you’re ready to put on your own show, by all means, send a message to their band booking email address.

5. House of Blues

For a potentially larger crowd, try out House of Blues in Anaheim. You’ll be responsible for selling a good number of  the tickets, but it’s a fun, high-profile venue.

Editorial credit: TripAdvisor

6. The Blue Beet

A Newport Beach favorite, Blue Beet has been around since 1912 and has a lively music calendar.

7. Orange International Street Fair

Every year for Labor Day Weekend, the Orange International Street Fair puts on music performances. This is the perfect opportunity to get out there and show your stuff (and grab some of those German donuts while you’re at it).

8. The Slidebar

This Fullerton staple may have “bar” in the title, but it can definitely be a kid-friendly location. We’ve had students put on some excellent performances at Slidebar.

9. Coach House

Coach House, the famed San Juan Capistrano concert hall, allows teen performers and, in fact, has even hosted evenings specifically dedicated to teen bands.

Editorial credit: RENKUS-HEINZ

10. Original Mike’s

Original Mike’s in Downtown Santa Ana is yet another wonderful restaurant and bar that has been known to host teen musicians.

11. Surf Cafea

One of our amazing clients opened a beautiful cafe in Huntington Beach that hires young musicians to perform. We’re so excited!

The truth is that almost any local venue can be a great place to perform. Your favorite restaurant may not know that live music is exactly what it needs until you inquire about whether they’d be interested in hosting you. When it comes to commercial music performing, the more proactive you are about seeking out opportunities, the more you’ll be getting them. Look out for everything that comes along, whether it’s a talent show, a fashion show, or a fundraiser. If you draw a crowd, soon places will be contacting you!

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