2023 Event Tickets go on sale at Noon on May 8, 2023!
Event Information

A Music of the Spheres concert in the main building at Lick Observatory. Photo by Mike Bolte.

Experience a Saturday night to remember at Lick Observatory!

Each year Lick Observatory brings world-renown musicians and astronomers to the summit of Mount Hamilton for a musical night to remember.

The event activities include:

  • Concert
  • Astronomy talk by world-renowned scientists
  • Viewing through the historic 36-inch Great Lick Refractor telescope
  • Viewing through the 40-inch Nickel Reflector telescope
  • Astronomy discussions with amateur astronomers and viewing through small telescopes
Please note: Weather may restrict telescope viewings, but other activities will still take place. Due to safety regulations and the nature of the event, children must be at least 12 years of age for admission and accompanied by an adult.


Lick Observatory Music of the Spheres 2023 event dates

Performers and Astronomy speakers subject to change.


EARLY TICKETS: If you’d like early access to purchase next summer’s tickets, join our Friends of Lick Observatory (FoLO) program by March 1st, 2023. As a thank you for supporting the observatory, you’ll get special access to purchase tickets one week before the general public. Please email tickets@ucolick.org if you have any questions.


Tickets always sell out fast!

Tickets will be available to the general public on May 8th, 2023 at Eventbrite at Noon.
There is a limit of 4 tickets per customer.


Tickets Options


☆ General concert seating.

☆ Astronomy lecture.

☆ View through the Great Refractor.

☆ View through the Nickel Telescope.


☆ Preferred concert seating.

☆ Astronomy lecture.

☆ Preferred viewing through the Great Refractor.

☆ Preferred viewing through the Nickel Telescope.

☆ 20% Discount at our gift shop.

Events will have either Preferred+ or VIP ticket options, depending on the program date.  See Ticketing Site TBD for available ticket options for a particular event date.


☆ Front center concert seating.

☆ Astronomy lecture.

☆ Priority viewing through the Great Refractor.

☆ Priority viewing through the Nickel Telescope.

☆ 20% Discount at our gift shop.

V.I.P. $219

☆ Private group tour of the Shane Telescope starting 2.5 hours before the concert.

☆ Catered buffet dinner in our historic Dining Hall.

☆ Front center concert seating.

☆ Astronomy lecture.

☆ Priority viewing through the Great Refractor.

☆ Priority viewing through the Nickel Telescope.

☆ 20% Discount at our gift shop.

Our upcoming Music of the Spheres events will have the following COVID-19 safety protocols:

  • COVID-19 safety protocols may change according to the conditions in Santa Clara County and the University of California Santa Cruz policies to ensure the safety of visitors, staff and volunteers.   Ticket purchasers will be notified of the current safety protocols and masking rules shortly before the event.
  • By purchasing a ticket, you agree to abide by the COVID policies in place at the time of the event.

Important Ticket Information

Doors open 1 hour before the concert begins. Numbered telescope viewing passes will be distributed in the order that General admission guests come through the door. VIP, Preferred+, and Preferred patrons have reserved lower number passes for telescope viewing.

Due to the historic construction of the telescope domes and safety concerns, the 36-inch Great Refractor Telescope and the 40-inch Nickel Telescope are not wheelchair accessible at this time. Those who have difficulty navigating stairs may also find the telescopes inaccessible. Funds are being raised through the Friends of Lick Observatory to repair the elevating floor of the Lick 36-inch telescope to re-enable handicap access.

Tickets are non-refundable. Please be advised that unpredictable weather patterns may restrict telescope viewings, though lectures, concerts and other activities will still take place. Please email tickets@ucolick.org if you have any questions.
Seating Map
Music of the Spheres updated Seating Diagram


Driving to Lick Observatory

Please allow a one-hour drive from San Jose. The road is good, but windy. The event typically lasts between 4 and 6 hours; prepare to drive home late in the evening. Parking is limited at the Observatory, so we encourage car pooling. There are no automative services or gas stations for 20 miles, so please plan ahead. See more information on driving directions and parking here.

Recommended Attire

Casual, comfortable clothing and walking shoes.  It can get surprisingly cold and windy after dark, so a sweater or coat is recommended.


Please be careful when walking around in the dark outside; bringing a flashlight is recommended. Children under age 12 are not allowed at this event.


The large telescopes will be available for viewing as soon as the sky is dark. Telescopes will remain open until every guest has had an opportunity to see through both the 36-inch Great Refractor and the 40-inch Nickel Telescope.

In order to view through the telescopes, guests will receive a numbered pass at the door. Guests with the lowest telescope numbers are admitted to the telescopes first – so we recommend getting to the observatory early!

Please note: Due to historic construction of the telescope domes, the 36-inch Refractor and the 40-inch Nickel Telescope are not wheelchair accessible at this time.

Volunteer amateur astronomers also set up small telescopes in the back parking so guests can view additional cosmic objects.

Gift Shop

Lick Observatory souvenirs and astronomy merchandise will be available for purchase between 7:30 to 11:30 p.m at the gift shop. You can also visit our gift shop online 24/7.


Snacks and beverages will be available near the Nickel Telescope. Vending machines and fountain water are also available.


We strive to make your visit as complete and meaningful as possible. Please let us know if you will need special assistance (for example, if you will have difficulty climbing stairs) by emailing tickets@ucolick.org, so we can make the necessary arrangements.

Venue Map
All events are held at the Lick Observatory Main Building visitor center. Directions and parking

Mailing List

Join the Summer Series mailing list to get updates on when events are scheduled, when tickets will go on sale, and announcements of new programs.