Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Summer at the AE Amphitheater

The American Eagle Amphitheater (also called Stage AE) just opened in December 2010 between Heinz Field and PNC Park, a little under a mile walk from the Priory. The AE has been going strong since its debut, but it seems to be really hitting its stride now that the warm weather has arrived and it can accommodate outdoor shows. I attended the sold out Avett Brothers show on May 27. The amphitheater seemed to hold the crowd (seemed to be about 5,500 people) comfortably, and the acoustics were more than adequate. A couple of observations: (1) if you are afraid it's going to rain, don't bring an umbrella - it will be confiscated; and (2) the shows are general admission, so expect that you will stand for the whole show among a crowd - if you think you want a drink or to use the restroom mid-show, sit near the sides of the viewing area, otherwise you will be fighting a mass of humanity to get out.

The AE, with its tweener capacity of about 5,500, seems to be attracting some shows that might otherwise pass Pittsburgh up. Upcoming acts include Panic at the Disco and Devo.

Here is a WTAE TV news story about the opening of Stage AE late last year.

There are a number of options nearby to eat pre- or post-concert, including the locally owned Rivertowne Tavern, which offers an array of draft beers, including many of its own.

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