Since 2006, Central Presbyterian Church has been a venue for the SXSW Music Festival. Naturally, we’re quite proud of the beauty of our space and the work done by our volunteers, but we really don’t need to do any bragging – there are plenty of reviewers, bloggers, and general World Wide Web writers who do all the “bragging” that we need!

2017 Schedule: on // on // See also: Who’s played here in past years?

Where would Jesus jam? 1800s church hosts SXSW concerts

Central Presbyterian Church only has two rules for rockers who play its sanctuary as part of South by Southwest: Don’t drink; and don’t shatter the stained glass.
— CNN Belief Blog
March 20, 2011

SXSW 2017: Big Star’s Third mesmerizes with strings at downtown church

Big Star's Third at Central Presbyterian Church
Big Star’s Third at Central Presbyterian Church
Photo by Mike White;
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“We either did something really right, or really wrong,” Ken Stringfellow deadpanned as the giant stained-glass panels on both sides of the Central Presbyterian Church stage suddenly beamed with glowing light near the end of Friday’s performance by Big Star’s Third. We’re going to go with the former.
— Peter Blackstock
March 18, 2017

GZO: SXSW Day 4: Natalie Maines impresses

Natalie Maines and Ben Harper at Central Presbyterian Church
Natalie Maines and Ben Harper
at Central Presbyterian Church
Photo by Mindy Best
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My other highlight of the evening was Natalie Maines, who performed with her band and guest Ben Harper at the Central Presbyterian Church, the SXSW with the best sound, period.
— L. Kent Wolgamott
March 16, 2013

It’s possible SXSW 2012 just peaked with the return of Fiona Apple

Fiona Apple at Central Presbyterian Church
Fiona Apple at Central Presbyterian Church
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After queuing for over an hour – it was the longest line I’ve seen this week – and a boiling, busy day, I, with amazing luck and a kind friend, managed to bag a seat in the front row of the Central Presbyterian Church, a legendary SXSW venue.
— Lucy Jones
March 16th, 2012

NY Times: SXSW: Nine O’Clock Services, With M. Ward

St. Vincent at Central Presbyterian Church
St. Vincent at Central Presbyterian Church
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At South by Southwest, the Central Presbyterian Church is almost always going to be a tough ticket. The bookings are carefully curated, the acoustics are great and the space is finite. But it was a whole order of tough outside the M. Ward gig last night. Wristbands and badges, the coin of the realm here, were all nigh useless as a crowd surrounded the church like a moat. And as it turned out, there was good reason to try and fight your way in. The violinist and vocalist Anni Rossi, who was signed by 4AD Records out of Minnesota – embraced the churchy vibe, sending ethereal sounds up into the rafters as people sat quietly before exploding with applause. And the reverence went up a notch when M. Ward came out. A huge cross was the only splash of light in the dimly lit that demonstrated that all those great words come from a very musical place. On “Sad, Sad Song,” he sang, “the hardest thing in the world to do is to find somebody believes in you.” Less hard, it should be pointed out, when you are in a church full of believers.
— David Carr
March 19, 2009

Twittering in Church
True enough, the line wrapped around the block, and around 8 p.m. someone told the hordes that they’d have to wait three or four hours for a seat. Indie indignation! But a sign near the church entrance read “Open for Prayer,” and maybe it worked, because midway through the night the crowd turned over, and new, still well-behaved people filled the pews.
— Melena Ryzik
March 19, 2009

Header photo: Judy Collins & Ari Hest, March 19, 2016 – photo by Kendall Duncan