Opening Acts You Won’t Want to Miss

Opening Acts You Won’t Want to Miss
Apr 15, 2024

Picture this: you’re sipping a refreshing cocktail on the lawn (one you personally prepared and brought into the venue, a perk of being able to BYO everything at Wolf Trap.) You’re making core memories with your closest friends and are excited for an artist you’ve waited for years to hear live.

Then, the strum of a guitar or thrum of the bass cuts through the chatter. The opening act takes the stage, leaving you entranced. It’s the type of music that’s worthy of a toe tap, which leads to a quick Shazam and a new jam to blast later in the week.

Soon enough, you’re a fan—another artist added to the “On Repeat” playlist.

No matter if they’re up-and-coming acts or performers who have plenty of hits, these special guests will get you ready for an unforgettable show! 

The Free Nationals

Gary Clark Jr. | Sun, June 9

Frequently seen accompanying Anderson. Paak as his backing band, these virtuosos bring retro and soulful vibes to every show. Their impressive musicianship and chill R&B will make you move.

KT Tunstall

Roger Daltrey | Wed, June 12

This Scottish singer/songwriter made her debut in 2004 with Eye to the Telescope, ushering long-standing hits “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” and “Suddenly I See” into the cultural zeitgeist.

Danielle Ponder

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue + Big Boi | Sat, June 15

From a public defender to a vocal powerhouse, Danielle Ponder is no stranger to taking risks! Her highly anticipated first studio album, Some of Us Are Brave, made waves in the jazz scene in 2022.

Brittney Spencer

Clint Black | Wed, July 3

With a masterful mesh of country and pop, Brittney Spencer’s music makes you smile from ear to ear! The Baltimore native has taken the stage with her fair share of Wolf Trap alumni, including Jason Isbell and Reba.

En Vogue

TLC | Fri, July 5

If you know R&B, you know En Vogue. These musical icons set the gold standard for girl groups in the ‘90s with their hits “Don’t Let Go (Love),” “Hold On,” and “My Lovin’ (You’re Never Gonna Get It).”

Jody Watley

TLC | Fri, July 5

Whether she’s making waves as the first Black performer to play Rizzo in Broadway’s Grease or hosting The Jody Watley Show on SiriusXM, this Grammy Award winner was born to entertain! Watley’s solo work expertly melds R&B, pop, dance, and more. 

Margaret Glaspy

The Mountain Goats + The New Pornographers | Sun, Aug 4

You’ll have a hard time “acting natural” when Margaret Glaspy warms up the crowd for The Mountain Goats + The New Pornographers. Her sound channels ‘90s rockstars, adding a modern flair to her nostalgic influences.

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

Lyle Lovett and his Large Band | Fri, Aug 9

Preservation Hall Jazz Band has a long history with Wolf Trap, making their debut in the 1971 inaugural season! Since then, they have appeared at the Filene Center over 20 times. Become a part of the story this summer. 

Amadou & Mariam

Andrew Bird | Wed, Aug 21

Husband-and-wife duo Amadou & Mariam have performed their Malian music across the world, making a name for themselves with their distinctive and eclectic style. No matter if they’re playing Coachella or filling the Filene Center, you’ll be captivated.

Molly Tuttle

Old Crow Medicine Show | Fri, Aug 30

Mixing folk and bluegrass with a sprinkle of modern country, Molly Tuttle has the perfect recipe for a vibrant performance. An awe-inspiring guitarist and nuanced vocalist, her songs feature spellbinding storytelling that will take your breath away!

Ximena Sariñana

Julieta Venegas | Sat, Sep 7

There is nothing “Mediocre” about singer/songwriter and actress Ximena Sariñana! The Mexico City native has collaborated with Wolf Trap alumni Natalia Lafourcade, Jason Mraz, and Juanes. You may also recognize her song “Frente al mar” from The Twilight Saga: New Moon soundtrack!

Alan Cumming

Kristin Chenoweth | Fri, Sep 13

Broadway legend, actor extraordinaire, cultural icon: Alan Cumming is a man of many talents. Most recently, he can be seen rocking fabulous outfits while hosting the ultimate reality show-turned-psychological adventure, The Traitors.

There’s no shortage of incredible opening acts in Summer 2024. Swing by to find a new favorite or rediscover a tune you used to love!