Musicians or passionate enthusiasts have many options for listening to classical, live or dance music in Palermo.
One of the few bistros in Palermo offering original live music is located near the port and historic centre. You can choose from a restaurant, tea room or bar. Mostly indie groups play here, but you can find a little bit of everything. Much frequented by students, but also by music enthusiasts of all ages. I suggest trying one of the more than 90 cocktail possibilities dedicated to Hemingway, all based on rum of course!
A classic of classics for people from Palermo since 1995, but also for Sicilians coming from the provinces for concerts and DJ sets of house and electronic music, including some memorable ones during their history (Elliot Sharp, Alvin Curran, Tom Verlaine, Irio de Paola, Ravi Coltrane, Ralph Towner, Jonathan Ritchman, Paolo Frusu, Ianos Asur, Giovanni Sollima, Bandabardò,, Radiodervish, Luca Madonia, Daniele Sepe, Vinicio Capossela, Mario Venuti, Claudio Coccoluto, Shantell, Calcutta, Cosmo …). The restaurant has remained almost unchanged since the 1950s and has a marble and plaster vintage charm. In addition to its guest programming, a selection of bands plays for national events.
The regional headquarters of Italian state television has a small and very intimate auditorium with extremely rich programming overseen by the journalist Salvatore Cusimano. It’s located on Avenue Strasbourg in the Stadium area, and is easily reachable from the centre with the 101 bus. There are often jazz and piano concerts. There are also book presentations, theatre and cultural events.
In the centre of Palermo, on the piazzetta Bagnasco, which is now one of the places for having an aperitif. It has a suggestive decor that brings together a mixture of festival lights of the Sicilian saints with reused antique furniture from the last century. You can listen to live rock and indie music, including occasional surprise concerts (I saw Niccolò Fabi playing acoustically with very short notice on a normal evening). The cocktail man, like Mr. Bolazzi, has a gruff appearance, but it’s just a first impression. They will do everything to help you spend an evening far from your cares. 🙂
2018 is precisely the year to learn more about one of the oldest conservatories in Italy. It’s been 400 years since the conservatory’s foundation and it has a rich programme of concerts (not too “classical” and with an aperitif). In addition to institutional events, my suggestion is to sneak into the place pretending to be a student in order to listen to the orchestra rehearsals. It’s a really spectacular show because the musicians go over the music several times. That way, you appreciate the improvements and talent and concentration in the space as well as the suggestions offered by the expert music teachers.