Maine has one big city – Portland, ME – but, setting aside the wraparound beauty of nature, the great charm of this northern state is its smaller cities and towns. The same can be said of Maine’s theaters and concert halls, often located in smaller towns and in historic buildings, say, like an old grange hall, now bearing the glorious name of “Opera House.” Starting with the big town, Portland has the Portland Stage, with a live company performing beloved shows. Also in that city is the dynamic and ever-interesting Merrill Auditorium. Moving outward, a symphony orchestra has been performing for years in Bangor, ME and the Maine State Ballet dances in seaside Falmouth. Waterville and Boothbay, ME have busy opera houses (where actual opera is heard rarely, if ever), that present comedy and children’s shows in addition to adult music and theater. Summer theater is wonderful in Maine because it takes you to off-the-road places with unique personalities. Among the many summer theaters are Deertrees Theatre in Harrison, ME, Hackmatack Playhouse in Berwick, ME, Lakewood Theatre in Madison, ME and the iconic Ogunquit Playhouse, hosting world-class productions. If a night of live theater sounds like a heavy lift, there is no shortage of clubs and intimate stages to find a relaxing evening of music or comedy or performance hijinks of a kind still to be categorized. Maine is full of personality and lots of surprises.