With a total seating capacity of 2,967, the San Diego Civic Theatre offers multiple options for seating preference and pricing, with six sections to choose from for your theatre experience.
In general, late arrivals for performances will be required to remain in the lobby areas until an appropriate seating break in the performance, as determined by the show management or producers. This may be for just the duration of a few minutes for an opening number or may be for the entire first act of the performance. Lobby monitors are available to view most on-stage performances.
Seating comprises the following sections:
This is the section closest to the stage and on the main floor. It includes a maximum of 1,218 seats featuring "continental" seating with no center aisles and extra leg room between rows. There are 4 wheelchair locations with companion seats. There are eight (8) side transfer seats. There are 20 permanent rows and three removable rows over the orchestra pit. Access to the Orchestra is via two sloped walkways with no stairs.
- Please note that during certain productions when the orchestra pit/extended orchestra pit are not required and removable seating is in place, the first three Rows are AA, BB, and CC followed by Row A.
This section is at the rear of the main floor and is elevated approximately three feet above the last row of the Orchestra. It includes 421 seats arranged in four sections of eight rows each. The last row of the Dress Circle (Row H) may be accessed without stairs and can accommodate a mix of up to 30 wheelchair spaces and companion seats.
Lower Loge (2nd level)
This section is similar to side box seats on either side of the house and overhang the Orchestra's side seating. There are a total of 46 seats in 11 rows on house left and a total of 50 seats in 13 rows on house right. Lower Loge seats are only accessible via stairs.
Mezzanine (2nd level)
This section overhangs above the Dress Circle. It includes 422 seats arranged in four sections of eight rows each. There are 12 wheelchair locations with accompanying companion seats. The last row of the Mezzanine (Row W) may be accessed without stairs and can accommodate a mix of up to 30 wheelchair spaces and companion seats.
Upper Loge (3rd level)
This section overhangs the Lower Loges on either side of the house. There are a total of 50 seats in 13 rows on house left and a total of 50 seats in 13 rows on house right. From the Mezzanine Lobby, Row H is accessible via elevators without encountering any stairs.
Balcony (3rd level)
This is the top level of seating, directly above the Mezzanine. There are a total of 710 seats in the Balcony.
- All Balcony seats require stair access from Balcony level lobby and are not wheelchair accessible. Patrons with walking difficulties or other mobility issues should not select Balcony seating. Binoculars are recommended for patrons wishing to view costume, facial and staging details.
Safety & Security
Your safety is our top priority and we rely on the cooperation and the good judgment of every person who enters the facility to ensure this level of safety. Our venues are protected by 24-hour video surveillance. Please review the following security details.
San Diego Theatres requires that all guests attending an event pass through a security screening performed by trained security personnel. This will include, but is not limited to:
- Walk-through or wand metal detection inspection
- Bag checks
- Visual inspection
- Other screening deemed necessary by security staff
We encourage patrons to leave non-essential items, including oversized purses and bags, at home or safely secured in a vehicle. Any item larger than a small clutch or wallet may be subject to a security inspection.
Please refer to our list of prohibited items. We ask that you leave these in your vehicle or at home. San Diego Theatres will not take possession or be responsible for any items removed as a result of the security screening process. Any patron who declines to be screened may be denied entry to San Diego Theatre’s events.
In order to accommodate for the security screening process, we ask that you please plan on arriving at least one hour prior to the scheduled start time of any event.
The following list of items are not allowed inside the theatre (Note: items may change without notice under direction of San Diego Theatres Security):
- Bags should not exceed 12" x 6" x 12." San Diego Theatres does not provide a general area to check bags, coats or any other personal belongings
- Oversized bags (i.e. backpacks, suitcases, beach bags, laptop bags, etc.) are prohibited
- Weapons (or any item that could be harmful to others), firearms, pepper spray/mace, flares or fireworks
- Outside food, beverage, liquid containers, alcohol, cans, bottles, flasks, coolers or water bottles
- Workman's tool, pocket knives, or any other tools
- Laser pens/pointers, flashlights, glow products
- Laptop/tablet computers
- Signs/Flags/Banners/Posters unless otherwise posted by tour management
- Skateboards, rollerblades, bicycles, helmets or chairs
- Drugs and illegal substances
- Video or audio recording devices of any kind including GoPro cameras
- Solicitation is not allowed
- Bags that do not exceed 12" x 6" x 12."
- Prescription medicine
- One sealed bottle of water (up to 16 ounces)
Lost and Found
If you lost something at the Theatre, please email us at email@example.com. Include as many details as you can, including the event you attended, the date you lost your item, details about the item lost as well as where you think you lost it.
Food & Beverage
San Diego Theatres has partnered with Centerplate, a Sodexo company and the leading hospitality partner to North America's live entertainment venues, to provide premier hospitality and food service for the Civic Theatre and Balboa Theatre. Through this partnership guests can look forward to enhanced safety measures and level of service, a tailored menu centered around unique locally sourced produce, breads and meats, innovative technology for faster service, and the introduction of a new sustainability initiative.
“As we know, guests already come to the San Diego Theatres for exceptional entertainment and by streamlining the food and beverage process we can get them back in their seats and enjoying all that they came for”
To promote the safety of our guests and enhance speed of service all food and beverage transactions at San Diego Theatres will be cash-free. Our bars and concession stands accept debit and credit cards, including major contactless and mobile payment methods.
The menu offerings will feature signature and premium cocktails, wines as well as local craft brews from some of the best breweries in the region. Menus will highlight local brands and businesses as much as possible, as well as ensure best-in-class sustainability practices and safety protocols.
Centerplate is the exclusive on-site caterer for all San Diego Theatres. From intimate rehearsals to elaborate affairs, our team of San Diego’s finest industry professionals will help seamlessly meet all your event catering needs.
We are happy to announce our new sustainability initiatives at San Diego Theatres including menus tailored to highlight locally sourced cuisine and 100% biodegradable and fully recyclable packaging.
HEALTH AND SAFETY
Centerplate supports the well-being of attendees through industry-specific measures that include, but are not limited to:
- Cashless payment systems at retail outlets
- Menus designed with modern safety and hygiene practices at the forefront
- Targeted kitchen disinfection, sanitation and cleaning schedules
- Specialized and regimented health and safety trainings
Please Note: Alcoholic beverages served to patrons 21 years & older. May not be offered at all shows. Outside food and beverage items may not be brought in to Balboa Theatre.
Side Orchestra Transfer Seating
Accessibility seating at the Civic Theatre includes:
- Seats with swing-out arms for easy transfer from wheelchair or scooter are available on the main floor Orchestra level, on both right and left aisles, of the Civic Theatre.
- All seats in the Orchestra section, Rows AA through V, may be accessed via sloping walkways, no stairs. By use of the elevators, seats in Dress Circle, Row H and Mezzanine, Row W may be accessed without stairs.
- Upper Loge, Row H may be accessed without stairs, using the Mezzanine elevator stop.
Radio-Frequency (RF) Audio Assistance Systems
For patrons with hearing difficulties, audio assistance devices are in use at the Civic Theatre. Headsets are available in the Theatre lobby areas prior to performances (headsets are loaned at no charge, on a first-come, first-served basis, with photo ID required).
T-Coil loop devices are available for patrons with T-Coil compatible aids. Please check with uniformed House Staff at entry for devices.
Most San Diego Opera performances at the Civic Theatre utilize the 'Digitext' system, projecting an English language translation text above the stage. Audio Description Services are available at select San Diego Opera performances. Please contact Ticketing Services at 619.615.4180 or San Diego Opera Patron Services at 619.533.7000 for further details or access individual Event Information pages on this site for specific event details.
Broadway San Diego offers American Sign Language (ASL) and Open Caption (OC) Services at select performances. Please contact Ticketing Services at 619.615.4180 for further details or access individual Event Information pages on this site for specific event details.
Sight and Hearing Impaired Seating
Certified Service Animals & Guide Dogs
Recognized California Service Animals, fully trained to provide a specific service to owner, are welcome into the Theatre. Only Service Animals will be allowed entry and must remain under owner’s control during the entire event. Companion Animals are not allowed inside the venue. For suggested seating recommendations or additional information, please contact Ticketing Services at 619.615.4180
Elevators are available to all levels of the Theatre, however designated Accessible Seating areas are located only on main floor Orchestra level. Seating in Loge and Balcony levels require patrons to navigate stairs.
With staff assistance, a Family/Special Needs restroom facility is available on the Upper Loge (East side), using the Mezzanine elevator stop. There are four restrooms equipped with a Changing Station for patrons with young children in attendance. Restrooms with a changing station are located in the Main Lobby Women’s room (West), Main Lobby Men’s room, Balcony level Woman’s room (East) and Balcony level Men’s room (East).
If you are attending an event and are in need of assistance at any time, please contact one of our uniformed Ushers or Public Safety Staff. Usher staff are available inside seating areas during all performances.
Special effects are part of many performances and may include the use of Strobe Lights (flicker-sensitive patrons), haze and smoke machines, etc. Should you have a sensitivity regarding any of these theatrical effects, please check the individual Event Information pages on this site or contact Ticketing Services for specific information.
Please be aware we may only become aware of the use of such effects close to the actual performance date.
San Diego Theatres is excited to welcome you back! The safety of our guests, artists, and staff is our top priority as we open our venues for live events. San Diego Theatres follows guidelines provided by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), San Diego County, and the CDC for all of our events. We will continue to monitor these guidelines and make further adjustments as needed.
Things to Know Before You Go
WE ARE CASHLESS
- To limit contact, Balboa Theatre is a cashless venue. This applies to:
- All ticket sales
- Food and beverage purchases
COVID-19 SAFETY REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL SHOWS BEGINNING DECEMBER 15, 2021
Per the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), all guests will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (at least two weeks after final dose) OR a negative test is required. Tests must be taken:
- 48 hours before an event for a PCR test
- 24 hours before an event for a rapid antigen test
In addition, all guests are now required to wear a mask while inside the theatre, regardless of vaccination status.
*For your convenience, Lux Concierge is offering rapid testing onsite at the Civic and Balboa Theatres for $40 per test. Testing is available 1 hour before the event. Please plan to arrive early to the venue to accommodate the testing.
- Acceptable proof of vaccination is either the original vaccination card, a printed copy of the vaccination card, or digital vaccination record with an appropriate ID matching the name on vaccination documentation.
- Unvaccinated guests will be required to take a COVID-19 PCR test within 48 hours of the event OR an antigen test 24 hours before the event and will provide proof of a negative result before entering the venue.
- Acceptable proof of a negative Covid-19 test result must be in the form of written documentation (paper or electronic copy).* The documentation must include:
- Type of test (indicating it is a PCR or antigen test)
- The entity issuing the result (e.g. laboratory, healthcare entity, or telehealth service)
- Specimen collection date.
- Information that identifies the person (full name plus at least one other identifier such as date of birth or passport number)
- Test Result
- Over-the-counter tests will not be accepted as proof of negative results of COVID-19
California residents may request a digital vaccination record at MyVaccineRecord.cdph.ca.gov.
Please note that based on Artist or Presenting Organization requirements, masks and/or proof of vaccination may be required for entry to certain performances. Event pages will be updated with details and ticket purchasers will receive a notice via email of any policy change for their performance.
ENTERING CIVIC THEATRE
- Arrive early! We recommend guests arrive 1 hour prior to their event.
- Multiple entry points are located around the theatre to reduce queue times.
- Use mobile ticketing for contactless entry. Have your ticket ready to present at the door. Pro Tip: Add your mobile ticket to your phone’s digital wallet and avoid last-minute searching.
- San Diego Theatres Ticketing Office windows are located across the plaza from Civic Theatre at the Concourse Building for will call, event sales, and assistance with ticketing.
CLEANING & SANITIZATION
- Hand sanitizer is available throughout the theatre with dispensers located on each floor.
- Filtered air: The theatre’s HVAC system has been upgraded with state-of-the-art Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization technology to better filter out dust, dander, smoke, viruses and bacteria, for cleaner, healthier air. Learn more about how the system works here.
- Thorough cleaning and disinfection are performed after all events.
FOOD & BEVERAGE
- Cashless payment systems are in place to limit contact.
- All food is served in individual packaging.
- Menus are designed with modern safety and hygiene practices at the forefront.
San Diego Theatres is taking many steps and precautions to help ensure your safety. However, by visiting San Diego Civic Theatre, you voluntarily assume all risks related to possible exposure to COVID-19.