Santa Barbara contains many performing art venues, including the 2,000 seat Arlington Theatre – the largest indoor performance venue in Santa Barbara that also serves as the home to the annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival.
The Lobero Theatre is a local’s favorite, an quaint historic building that hosts small plays and concerts. The gorgeous Granada Theater is downtown’s tallest building and reopened in 2008 after extensive renovations. And the 4,562 seat Santa Barbara Bowl is an outdoor amphitheater, nestled in a picturesque canyon northwest of downtown at the base of the Riviera.
Santa Barbara is considered a haven for classical music lovers with a symphony orchestra, a part-time opera company, and many non-profit classical music groups (such as CAMA). The Music Academy of the West, located in Montecito, hosts an annual music festival in the summer, drawing renowned students and professionals.
In addition to being a popular tourist and resort destination, the city economy includes a large service sector, education, technology, health care, finance, agriculture, manufacturing, and local government. In 2004, the service sector accounted for fully 35% of local employment.
Education in particular is well represented, with five institutions of higher learning on the south coast: The University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara City College, Westmont College, Antioch University, and the Brooks Institute of Photography.
Aerospace, technology and defense companies form the basis of the city’s private employment.