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El Rey Theater

30 Reviews
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El Rey Theater

30 Reviews
Sorry, there are no tours or activities available to book online for the date(s) you selected. Please choose a different date.
Top Selling Tours & Activities in and around Los Angeles
from US$99.00
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5515 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036-3801
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Wilshire/WesternLos Angeles Metro Rail46 min
Expo/La BreaLos Angeles Metro Rail53 min
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Shanelle wrote a review Feb 2020
Santa Monica, California1,758 contributions96 helpful votes
Intimate music venue with a mezzanine and side elevated platforms. Most recently came here to watch Hunny perform, and really enjoyed the show. The security line was short since we arrived pretty late, and you just have to go through metal detectors and scan your tickets (we used the axs app) at the door. Bathrooms are to the immediate right, and it was a very long line for the ladies room. Unfortunately there’s only one bathroom (3 stalls), but on the other hand, there’s two bars (one on the bottom and one upstairs). There’s some tables with chairs to sit in the lounge plus some along the edge of the second level if you don’t want to be down in the pit. Otherwise, for shorter people (like myself) the sides (there’s little steps that you’ll have to take up) provide an elevated view where you’re still on the ground, but might be able to see a bit better. Parking is a miserable situation. You can pay for valet and there’s various lots around. We got lucky and found parking in Wilshire that was free after 8pm, but most of the neighborhoods around are permit-parking. La Brea has some metered spots too, but those were all taken when we looked. The people who work here are standoffish and not that friendly. Note that they don’t sell advance tickets for other shows, and only sell shows in-person for the show that’s playing that very night. The website hadn’t worded it clearly enough, so I was confused about that until I asked (unfortunately Eve 6 was sold out online so I was hoping to see if they had some in-stock at the box office while I was there).
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Date of experience: February 2020
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hirunningman wrote a review Dec 2019
Honolulu132 contributions80 helpful votes
The El Rey is a wonderful small venue for bands. Sound was great throughout the house and there were both standing and seated options for the show I saw. The sides are slightly tiered and this is where the seating was to be found. The wait line and security were well organized and attentive (security actually walked the que redirecting will-call to the box office. Having been in more than a few hot boxes for small shows, I was happy to find that their AC worked well.
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Date of experience: December 2019
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helloceleste wrote a review Aug 2018
Los Angeles, California334 contributions77 helpful votes
This is one of LA's best venues. It was recently remodeled a few years ago, but they preserved the theater's original look. (Yes, those are glass chandeliers.) It's a good size, the sound is usually top notch, the staff is generally cheery (hey everyone has a bad day, yeah?), and inside it is welcoming and isn't intimidating. There's a smoking area, and the drinks - cost as much as you think they would at a concert venue. It's reasonable, but not cheap. I am short, so having a good view of the stage is important to me and there's really not a bad spot in the house. I usually even stand towards the back! DO NOT bring gum in. It is not allowed. I have probably spent the cost of 5 concert tickets in packs of gum that I've had to throw away because I absentmindedly brought those in. Lastly, if you want to see a show, buy a ticket before hand. Though it might not state "SOLD OUT" the morning of the show, chances are if it's a hot ticket, it will sell out by the time the first band goes on. Don't sit on it! *Hollywood note: In the Corey Haim/Corey Feldman movie "License To Drive" the El Rey was their destination before grandpa's car gets towed.
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Date of experience: August 2018
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elizabethlascheid wrote a review Apr 2018
Marina del Rey, California1,844 contributions24,885 helpful votes
+1
The El Rey Theater is in the Miracle Mile section of Los Angeles. The theater is from the 40's and has been redone and turned into a concert hall and a place that can be rented for weddings and other events. It is just lovely. The outside neon is stunning and the inside is intimate, I think it can hold about 700 people. When you enter there is a large bar that is very pretty. Inside the theater it is all standing room only. There is a stage and the pit/dance area. On the sides is a small step to a carpeted area that does not get as packed as the pit. Right next door is a great place to eat and you can go from the theater into the eatery through a side door and even take items with you into the theater. The owner of the eatery is wonderful. All of the above is great, but sadly, it is unlikely we will ever return to the theater until they get their act together. The El Rey is run, I assume, by Goldenvoice, who does nothing but book concerts so you would think they know what they are doing. We went to see a band Autograf (EDM) in early April. Parking is valet, but valet does not start until after 7 PM and it is likely you are already there in line since it is all general admission. If you can't find street parking, the chances are you will be forced to use their valet service and now you are at the end of a long line. Once you are ready to go in there is the fun of dealing with untrained security. They really aren't too much of a problem. They will wand you etc. and all that is great. What is not great is them standing around while drugs (X etc) are sold right in front of them and right in front of the entrance, but on the sidewalk. What is not great is them allowing people in so drunk they can barely stand. While we were there, we saw all of this. I had my 11 year old grandson with me. He has been to more concerts than most adults. He is never an issue. So, I was not pleased when a security member actually touched me (I guess he thought he needed to make sure I was listening to him) to tell me to "watch" my "kid" the entire time he was in the theater and make sure to keep a "constant eye on him." Now, he was not telling me this because he was concerned about the drugs being sold or the drunks in front of us being let in, without a word said. He was telling me this because for whatever reason he assumed I would allow an 11 year old to run wild, if not for his sage advice. I wonder if he thought grabbing onto my shoulder to tell me how to take care of a child would be at all helpful. That would be the same child that stayed in line, held my hand the entire time in line, and let's see, was not drunk, loud, or selling some of his spare drugs. I did not bother to say anything to him because wasting my time is not something I tend to do. You can tell by tone and tenor when someone is trying to be helpful or kind. This person just does not like kids, too bad, and is scared of the drug dealers, so tries to be a K mart clerk with power to pick on a grandmother with her grandson. Now, I know he was not going to say a word to the dealers because I heard him say he did not want a fight, he also did not want a "fight" with the 30 or so people in the front smoking pot. I don't care about any of this. It comes with the concert territory sometimes. That is fine. We know what we are getting into, but don't, and I mean, don't ever grab a grandmother by the shoulder and instruct her on the care of her grandchild. We were in line for a long time so we could not help by hear this person talking to other security guards about not wanting trouble with the dealers and just let it go about the smoking because "why bother." Again, I don't care, just don't bother me or mine. The fun inside did not last long. The first band was so loud that we had no choice as did some others but to leave. I know all about loud concerts. We go to them all the time and we always have ear protection, and great ear protection. I am not talking about so loud you can't think straight, I am talking about so loud it is illegal and had a fire marshal been on site the place would have been closed down if the opening act did not turn it down. I have it on tape. I have a great phone. The horrid noise on the video is crackling speakers and the sound up so loud that the sound system can't help but distort everything to just a loud, painful, buzz. People were holding their ears and as some were leaving we were right behind. Even with state of the art ear protection my grandson was holding his ears and wanted out. This would be the same little boy that a week earlier saw Stone Temple Pilots in the front row and screamed, "One more time" at the end. There is no seating in the lobby area to wait out the first act and hope for better for the second. There is really not even a place to stand and wait it out. You are left with a choice to leave and not return or do permanent damage to your ears. With all the technology out you would think the El Rey could manage to let people in and out. There are no neighbors to be disturbed, it is on Wilshire and nothing is open near by--nothing, but the great restaurant. But no, you can't do that. You can't even just stand in front, in or out, don't touch that floor because you are out. I had on 3 wristbands. One to allow me into the eatery, one that showed I was over 21 and one that I had no idea what it was for. I had tickets. Now, a dollar hand stamp would work to let the cracker jack security know that you can go in and out. But this is all too confusing for them. In or out, don't step on that floor. We, of course, missed the band we wanted to see, since damaging my grandchild's ears would not please his mother, I don't think. We wasted the ticket, we wasted the money, we were offered nothing, no one told anyone to turn it down. There were at least a dozen people leaving, many complaining and asking why they can't come back later, if they had known, etc. etc. The bathrooms are very small and there is not enough stalls at all. You will be waiting in a very long line. So, Goldenvoice, or whoever runs the El Rey, get it together. The place could be great. Get some professional security, maybe a dollar hand stamp and for the safety of everyone, make sure the sound is within some sort of legal limits, there are hand held machines for that, off to Home Depo you should go.
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Date of experience: April 2018
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karula76 wrote a review Apr 2018
Los Angeles, California776 contributions107 helpful votes
El Rey Theater is a great little secret in miracle mile, Los Angeles. It is standing room only and very intimate. I love seeing artists perform here as the it is not a large venue and you have a good view of the stage from pretty much every spot. The venue does not have parking, but there are many parking structures around it.
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Date of experience: April 2018
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