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The Santa Barbara Bowl and SBHS Rocks!

Olivia Rodrigo, Smashing Pumpkins, Lorde—what do these artists have in common? They all performed at the Santa Barbara Bowl last season. As the 2023 concert season approaches, artists are finalizing their tour dates. The Santa Barbara Bowl, with its captivating open-air amphitheater ambiance under the stars, is an attractive venue for both performers and concertgoers. Located within a five-minute walking distance of Santa Barbara High School, the Bowl also offers employment opportunities to SBHS students, establishing a mutually beneficial relationship. The upcoming season at the Santa Barbara Bowl promises excitement with a lineup of new and returning artists, including Hozier, The Lumineers, and Father John Misty + The Head And The Heart. Death Cab for Cutie and The Postal Service will also be returning!

But how connected is Santa Barbara High to the Bowl? Rick Boller, the Executive Director of the Santa Barbara Bowl, sheds light on the relationship between the two entities and the involvement of SBHS students. When asked about the opportunities provided by the Bowl to SBHS students, he explained that their outreach program provides funding to the SBHS Marching Band. Additionally, the SB Bowl works with youth programs and organizations to offer discounted tickets to students like us through the SB Bowl Community Ticket Subsidy. Over the years, Santa Barbara High has maintained a strong association with the Bowl. Boller emphasizes, “The Santa Barbara Bowl and SBHS have a long-standing relationship. We utilize the parking areas on campus for each of our 37 performances every year. In recent years, the SBHS graduation was also held at the Bowl while Peabody Stadium was reconstructed.” It is heartening to know that our school and the SB Bowl collaborate in a reciprocal relationship. 

The Bowl has had a positive impact on the lives of many SBHS students. Not only do they attend concerts at the venue, but many also work there. Nicole Cornejo, an SBHS student, sells food and concessions at the Santa Barbara Bowl. She shares that the Bowl holds a special place in her heart, stating, “It’s a huge part of my life.” The proximity of SBHS to the Bowl fuels her interest in pursuing opportunities there, since she can hear the music when she’s nearby. Nicole’s decision to work at the Bowl was influenced by her mother, who has been employed there for nearly thirty years. With her deep love for music and her upbringing at the Bowl, it feels like home to her.

Regarding the shows that interest students, Rick Boller notes, “In recent years, we have seen many students take an interest in and attend hip-hop and EDM shows. This year, we have had more country shows than ever before, with many SBHS students in attendance. Some of those shows include Tyler Childers, Billy Currington, and Brett Young, to name just a few.” Nicole Cornejo agrees, mentioning her enjoyment of the Tyler Childers concert. She recalls his remarkable performance, saying, “He had so much soul in his performance.” Like previous seasons, the upcoming season will cater to diverse music genres, appealing to a wide range of music tastes, including yours!

Lorde performing at the SBBowl

[Photo credits: Ella Bailey]


  • Ella Bailey

    Ella is a VADA Senior here at SBHS. She was born and has roots in Sweden and moved to Santa Barbara when she was young. She chose to become a contributor to The Forge because she enjoys writing creatively and analytically in her free time. She loves to write about arts and culture, and hopes to bring her artistic passion to The Forge.

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