Have you heard? The Sound is coming to the Del Mar Fairgrounds. The new music venue will make its grand entrance on Friday, Feb. 3, with a performance by Ziggy Marley.
To get ready for showtime, we’re taking a peek at the mid-sized performance space and what we can expect for its inaugural lineup.
Behind the scenes
Music lovers have been patiently waiting for the venue to open. It was approved in 2017 by California’s 22nd District Agricultural Association — the manager and operator of the Del Mar Fairgrounds — and anticipated to open in October 2019. Construction delays and the pandemic slowed progress, but the show must go on. In November 2022, it was announced The Sound would finally debut in February 2023.
Performances will be managed by Belly Up Entertainment — known for its concert venue in Solana Beach. It expects to bring ~60 shows to The Sound annually.
The Sound will take over a 9,500-ft space in the Surfside Center that used to be an off-track betting facility. Now, there’s less at stake, but guests can bet on being entertained because the venue features:
- Capacity for 1,900 guests, including 250 permanent balcony seats and 125 seats along the sides of the standing room. Fully-seated shows will hold 800 guests.
- A VUE Audiotechnik sound system that’s responsible for making noise in The Sound.
- Five bars, four on the lower level and one on the balcony.
- A 43 ft wide, 32 ft deep stage.
The venue is designed to be flexible. So, you could be rocking out at a show, or the space can be modified to accommodate other festivities at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.
While Ziggy Marley may be the first performer at The Sound, the venue hosted three performances for the “Mainly Mozart All-Star Orchestra Festival” in October 2022 — before it got its name. This year, some big acts set to turn up at The Sound include:
- Ziggy Marley | Friday, Feb. 3 + Saturday, Feb. 4
- Steve Aoki | Saturday, Feb. 11
- Banda Pequenos Musical | Saturday, Feb. 18
- Big Gigantic | Saturday, Feb. 25
- The Flaming Lips | Monday, March 8
- Jason Mraz with his Superband | Saturday, March 18
- Colin Hay | Friday, April 7
- Sylvan Esso | Friday, Sept. 1
🔊 Want to hear updates and announcements? You can follow The Sound at its website and Instagram.