Lakeland is proud to offer variety of arts & cultural opportunities including museums, theatres and public art displays. Lakeland is also proud to boast the Nation’s largest single-campus collection of Frank Lloyd Wright Architecture.
Performing & Visual Arts
The Lakeland Center
TheLakelandCenter.com | (863) 834-8100
The Lakeland Center is a four-building, multi-purpose entertainment complex and is home to many diverse contemporary artist and performing arts programs including the Lakeland Broadway and Entertainment Concert Series, The Imperial Symphony Orchestra, The Lakeland Concert Band, various children’s performances and numerous dance and talent competitions. The Youkey theater is a focal point for the arts and entertainment in the Central Florida market, hosting a variety of cultural and entertainment events for our community.
Florida Dance Theatre
floridadancetheatre.org | (863) 802-0399
Florida Dance Theatre is a non-profit organization and a contemporary ballet and modern dance company dedicated to the enhancement of culture in the community, through the art of dance. Utilizing dance as an instructional and educational tool, the professional dance company and training academy provide high quality dance to the greater central Florida communities. Florida Dance Theatre brings the art of dance to the entire community and beyond through Education, Outreach, and Entertainment.
Harrison Center for the Visual & Performing Arts
HarrisonArts.com | (863) 499-2855
The Lois Cowles Harrison Center for the Visual & Performing Arts (accredited as Harrison School for the Arts) offers programs in motion picture arts, music, theatre, musical theatre, dance, and visual arts for students in grades 9 – 12. Students are admitted to the Harrison School for the Arts by audition only and attend Lakeland Senior High School for their general education courses. Performances are open to the public and include the Harrison Symphony, Harrison Singers, theatre main stage productions, musical theatre productions, concerts from the Piano Department and Dance Department, visual arts exhibitions, short films, and an annual school-wide musical.
Imperial Symphony Orchestra
ImperialSymphony.org | (863) 688-3743
The Imperial Symphony Orchestra (ISO) is celebrating 45 years of musical service to the City of Lakeland and Polk County. Each season offers musically enriching concerts and diverse social events. From September through May the orchestra presents five “Masterworks” concerts at The Lakeland Center’s Youkey Theatre, with world-class guest artists. Another successful event for the Imperial Symphony is the annual fully staged opera, bringing world-renowned singers to the city each January and working in collaboration with Florida Southern College. Outdoor “Pops” concerts are performed in Lakeland and Winter Haven, as well as “Concert Under the Stars” at historic Bok Sanctuary in the spring.
Lakeland Community Theatre
LakelandCommunityTheatre.com | (863) 603-7529
Lakeland Community Theatre is in its 25th season at the Lake Mirror Theatre Complex on beautiful Lake Mirror in downtown Lakeland. The theatre produces five Main Stage Productions per season which run from August through July. Other special events throughout the year include “The Edge”, an alternate stage read series, and Theatre for Youth. Theatre classes are offered throughout the year, as well as spring and summer theatre camps. Lakeland Community Theatre’s traveling Page to Stage troupe entertains and educates in local schools.
PolkTheatre.org | (863) 682-7553
The Historic Polk Theatre, which opened in December 1928 as a vaudeville and movie house, is one of only three atmospheric theatres still in existence in the state of Florida, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Polk was the first air conditioned building in Lakeland and when they turned the air on, the lights down town dimmed! It was once owned by Publix Theatre Group of NYC, a name which George Jenkins liked so much, it’s what he named his grocery store! Restored in 1999, the Polk Theatre shows quality films, independent and foreign films and hosts a yearly Performing Arts Series that brings nationally acclaimed shows to its stage. Tours and school tours are available upon advance request.
Explorations V Children’s Museum
ExplorationsV.com | (863) 687-3869
Located in the heart of downtown Lakeland in a historic 1929 Kress building, Explorations V offers three floors of kid-powered exhibits and interactive programs that celebrate the five senses! Art & science are the pathways for many of the learning concepts, freeing the child’s creativity and unleashing the power of play. Surprise your senses on a jet-stream journey of discovery through touchable exhibits featuring art, science, literature, math, health, life skills and cultures from around the world. Enhance the life of a child and visit Explorations V today!
Frank Lloyd Wright Architecture & Visitors Center
FLSouthern.edu/FLLWCtr | (863) 680-4444
Florida Southern College is home to the largest single-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture in the world. When approached in 1938 by then-college president Dr. Ludd Spivey with a request to design “a great education temple in Florida,” Frank Lloyd Wright was well-known as the world’s leading architect. The plan Mr. Wright designed for Florida Southern is in keeping with his innovative vision for buildings to work in harmony with the land. Twelve of the 18 structures Mr. Wright designed for Florida Southern were built over a 20-year span, and all but one of the structures was built by students working with Mr. Wright. Today, the Frank Lloyd Wright Visitor Center attracts more than 30,000 visitors annually to tour the campus, along with an exhibit of Wright’s photos, drawings, correspondence, and a model of the campus he named “Child of the Sun.” Self-guided tours, with brochures, are available on Campus at all times.
Polk Museum of Art
PolkMuseumofArt.com | (863) 688-7743
The Polk Museum of Art has served Lakeland and Polk County for more than 40 years. Featuring more than 20 exhibitions per year in a wide variety of artistic styles and genres: from the realistic to the abstract and from the ancient to the extremely contemporary, guests are sure to find something they like on display! The Museum also provides a comprehensive calendar of events and educational activities along with the unique Museum Store filled with artistic gifts, jewelry, and home décor.
Florida Air Museum at SUN ‘n FUN
FloridaAirMuseum.org | (863) 644-2431
Designated in 2003 as Florida’s official aviation museum and education center, the Florida Air Museum at SUN ‘n FUN displays a unique collection of more than 35 antique, classic and “home built” airplanes. The museum also is home to the extensive personal aviation collection of Howard Hughes, including a 14-foot model of the HK-1, better known as the “Spruce Goose”. Other exhibits highlight prominent figures from the world of aviation such as the Wright brothers and Charles Lindbergh. The Florida Aviation Hall of Fame honors Floridians who have influenced aviation history and aerospace technology.