Arts & Culture

New Exhibits & Shows Happening in Dallas in 2021

Staying home has its perks, but there are wonderful, interesting events to behold in our city. Make it a great year by scheduling time for the happenings below!

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Angela Roe
Posted on Jan 25, 2021

Despite scaled-back productions, rescheduled dates and enhanced safety precautions, "the show must go on" as the old adage states, as many performances and exhibitions are slated to forge ahead this year. Grab your mask, sanitizer and your family for some unforgettable experiences coming to Dallas in 2021!

"Stand-To 2021: A National Veterans Convening" (North Dallas) - This virtual event held by the George W. Bush Presidential Center brings together experts to discuss strategies for supporting our post-9/11 veterans. With the goal of enhancing veteran employment, education and wellness, attendees for the Feb. 18 meeting will hear the latest research and ideas for ensuring our nation's heroes are being served well in the future. The event is free, and you can register here. Also don't miss the "Out of Many, One: Portraits of America's Immigrants," exhibit opening in early March, featuring President Bush's collection of 43 stories and oil paintings honoring our nation's immigrants.

"America the Beautiful" at Dallas Blooms (East Dallas) - The Dallas Arboretum has announced a patriotic theme for its annual spring festival boasting half a million gorgeous blooms. From Feb. 20 to April 11, enjoy the renowned outdoor oasis while celebrating our nation's unique beauty. Special programming includes wine and beer pairings and children's events. Learn more here.

Penguin Days (South Dallas) - Get to the Dallas Zoo before Feb. 28 to take advantage of Penguin Days, a low-cost activity fit for all ages. At $8 per person, this steal is a great way to spend the day if you can tolerate cooler temps. The "Animals in Action" pop-up shows highlight specific animals such as birds of prey, tortoises or cheetahs, or you can feed one of the zoo's 10 giraffes for an extra $6. Pre-purchase your tickets here.

Devoted: Art and Spirituality in Mexico and New Mexico (Arts District) - Beginning Feb. 28, the Dallas Museum of Art will display a group of works depicting Christ, the Virgin Mary and other figures recognized in the Catholic tradition. "Devoted" demonstrates the importance of art for faith communities while highlighting the museum's extensive Latin American collection. This exhibit will be a worthwhile stop for the spiritual and art lovers alike. While there, don't miss the dynamic "For a Dreamer of Houses" exhibit running until July 4, 2021. Buy tickets here.

Sightings: Magali Reus (Arts District) - If you thought a "No Parking" sign couldn't be considered art, you thought wrong. This exhibit coming to the Nasher Sculpture Center showcases the work of a Dutch artist whose work "examines the relationships between people and objects through the distortion of common images." Holding the view that our online habits have shifted our habits and interplay with physical objects, Reus' sculptures are sure to both challenge and entertain. The exhibit drops in May and you can purchase tickets here.

The Weeknd concert (Victory Park) - This summer Grammy winner and Super Bowl LV headliner The Weekend will drop into town for a concert at the American Airlines Center on July 23. Bringing his synth sounds and cool vibes, you won't want to miss the chance to not only enjoy live music in person again but also jam to "I Feel It Coming" and "Blinding Lights" with all your closest friends in Dallas. Purchase tickets here.

Wicked (Fair Park) - Dallas Summer Musicals had to postpone several productions due to COVID, but Broadway sensation "Wicked" is still slated to open Aug. 4. For anyone who knows the "Wizard of Oz" story, this prequel is creative and entertaining for adults and children. Elphaba and Glinda will have you laughing and crying throughout, plus you'll leave humming the show-stopping ballads performed on Wicked's inventive sets. Get your tickets now!

Maroon 5 concert (Fair Park) - It will be nice and steamy in mid-August when Adam Levine himself rocks the outdoor Dos Equis Pavilion, but Maroon 5 hits will be a welcome escape from the Texas heat. Grab some lawn seats, a delicious beverage and celebrate the close of summer with some moves like Jagger. Buy tickets here.

Riverfront Jazz Festival (Downtown Dallas) - Rescheduled to Sept. 3-5, this one-of-a-kind festival hosted by The Black Academy of Arts and Letters brings together premier musicians across the R&B, soul, blues and jazz genres for guests to enjoy. Erykah Badu, Peabo Bryson and David Sandborn are on the lineup, to name a few, and the "Forty Fingers on Keys - Saluting Six Great Women of Jazz," performance will easily be a fan favorite. On the festival's last days, members of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra will grace the stage, and the nightly after party sets should be a treat. Learn more here.