Alpine Valley Music Theatre

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Alpine Valley Music Theatre
Alpine Valley
LocationCounty Highway D
East Troy, Wisconsin
Coordinates42°44′16″N 88°26′01″W / 42.737778°N 88.433611°W / 42.737778; -88.433611Coordinates: 42°44′16″N 88°26′01″W / 42.737778°N 88.433611°W / 42.737778; -88.433611
OwnerConsolidated-Tomoka Land Company
OperatorLive Nation
TypeOutdoor amphitheater
Seating typeReserved, Lawn
Venue Info

Alpine Valley Music Theatre is a 37,000-capacity amphitheater located on County Highway D in East Troy, Wisconsin. The seasonal venue was built in 1977 and it features a characteristic wooden roof, covering the 7,500-seat pavilion and a sprawling lawn. It was reported on Urban Milwaukee Dial on August 25, 2014 to be for sale for over $8 million.

The theatre is located roughly equidistant between Madison, Milwaukee, Rockford, and Chicago, and therefore draws a wide regional audience.

Alpine Valley is generally considered the Milwaukee stop on major tours and the Chicago stop when the act doesn't perform in Illinois.

Until 1993, when the Glen Helen Pavilion (now known as the Glen Helen Amphitheater) was built in California, it was the largest amphitheater in the United States. That year, it was taken over by Nederlander Concerts.[1] SFX (now Live Nation) acquired Alpine Valley from the Nederlanders in 1999.[2] In 2019 the venue was sold to Consolidated-Tomoka Land Company for $7.5M with Live Nation retaining its lease.[3]


The amphitheater has played host to many concerts and music festivals, including Family Values Tour, Furthur Festival, H.O.R.D.E. Festival, Lollapalooza, Monsters of Rock Festival, Ozzfest, PJ20 Festival, Projekt Revolution, Tibetan Freedom Concert and World Series of Rock Festival.

Boz Scaggs headlined the venue's inaugural event on June 30, 1977.

Jimmy Buffett & The Coral Reefer Band played during its inaugural summer of 1977 and every subsequent year since 1995, with the exception of 2005, 2017, and 2018.

Shaun Cassidy played here to thousands of screaming young fans, mostly teenage girls, on June 24, 1978.

Aerosmith have performed here fourteen times since 1977, including the venue's inaugural season.

The Grateful Dead played at Alpine Valley 20 times from 1980 through 1989. Their album, Dick's Picks Volume 32, was recorded here in 1982 and their concert performance video, Downhill From Here, documents concerts from 1989.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed here on July 12 and 13, 1984 during the Born in the U.S.A. Tour.

Judas Priest (Metal Conqueror Tour) and Kick Axe (opener, Vices Tour) performed here on August 5, 1984.

Deep Purple played here on August 17, 1985.

The “Monsters of Rock” tour, which included Van Halen, Scorpions, Dokken, Metallica and Kingdom Come opened their tour here for 3 nights, May 27-29, 1988.

Mötley Crüe filmed their music video for "Same Ol' Situation" at a concert here on July 7, 1990.

On August 26, 1990, Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble played at the amphitheater along with other blues greats Robert Cray, Buddy Guy, Eric Clapton and his brother Jimmie Vaughan. After the concert, Vaughan left the area on a helicopter to return to Chicago and he and four others were killed, when the helicopter crashed into a ski hill, within the Alpine Valley resort.

Phish has played Alpine Valley 20 times; their live album, entitled, Live Phish Volume 5, was recorded here on July 8, 2000. Phish performed one of the longest jams of the Phish 3.0 period (post break up), playing a version of the song "Ruby Waves" lasting 38 minutes on 07/14/2019.

The Ozzfest tour came here almost every year and the CD, Ozzfest 2001: The Second Millennium, is culled from performances here.

The Dave Matthews Band has played a two night stand each year at Alpine Valley since 1999 except for 2001, 2011, 2014, 2017 and 2018.[4] Their live releases, Live Trax Vol. 8 was recorded on August 7, 2004, Live Trax Vol. 15 was recorded on August 9, 2008, and "Live Trax Vol. 36" was recorded on July 26, 2015.

Coldplay performed during their Twisted Logic Tour on August 13, 2005. It was their largest American show ever, as it sold out the entire venue.[citation needed]

Korn recorded the music video for their song "Politics", during the Alpine Valley stop of the Family Values Tour on August 26, 2006.

Rage Against the Machine played a concert at Alpine Valley, with Queens of the Stone Age, for their only announced solo show, on August 24, 2007.

The Black Crowes filmed their "Hard to Handle" music video here.

Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews Band, Rush and Phish have all regarded Alpine Valley as one of their favorite venues to play.[citation needed] Former Phish road manager Brad Sands regards Alpine Valley as his favorite venue to see the band.[5] Pearl Jam also played their only scheduled U.S. dates at the venue in 2011, as part of their 20th anniversary celebrations.[6][7]

Dead and Company (with former members of the Grateful Dead) have played Alpine Valley Music Theater 4 times, twice in the Summer of 2016 and twice in the Summer of 2018. On 06/23/2018, Justin Vernon of Bon Iver was a guest with Dead and Company for 4 songs. The 06/22/218 and 06/23/2018 performances marked the 30th anniversary of Grateful Dead concerts at this venue in the summer of 1988, when they played 4 shows over 5 nights.

On September 21, 2019, Farm Aid performed at Alpine Valley to a crowd of 36,000, marking the second time the fundraiser came to the state of Wisconsin. [8]


The resort is not owned by the owners of the music theater. The hotel serves over a hundred rooms in a Bavarian themed decor. There is also a ski hill and golf course as part of the entire resort complex.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ New Moves From Nederlander
  2. ^ SFX completes Alpine Valley purchase
  3. ^ "Alpine Valley Music Theatre sold for $7.5 million, but Live Nation's lease will continue". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 2019-09-26.
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-08-30. Retrieved 2008-06-27.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Pearl Jam Announce Details of Their Festival, Film, Tour and Book". 2011-05-17. Retrieved 2011-05-17.
  7. ^ "Pearl Jam reveals WI Labor Day Festival". 2011-05-17. Retrieved 2011-05-17.
  8. ^ Hensiak, Chad (2019-09-26). "'The Fight ain't over' Nelson says Farm Aid is committed to the cause". Elkhorn Independent.

External links[edit]