The best free dance performances and series in NYC

Discover NYC’s free dance performances, ranging from traditional to experimental, all while keeping your purse firmly shut

New York City is (arguably) the dance capital of the world. But you don't have to always pay your way to the stage. Check out our lineup of the best free dance shows taking place at venues like the David Rubenstein Atrium and WeisAcres happening this weekend, this week and this month.

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Mariinsky Ballet

Critics' pick

The world-renowned artists of the Mariinsky grace Brooklyn in a season of classic and contemporary works. The run begins with the company's Swan Lake (choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov and revised by Konstantin Sergeyev) and Alexei Ratmasky's Cinderella. To conclude, the troupe offers two performances of works to Chopin: Michel Fokine's Chopiniana (1908), Jerome Robbins's In the Night (1970) and Benjamin Millepied's Without (2011).

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BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, Fort Greene

Sundays on Broadway

Critics' pick

The first installment is something of a marathon: Over eight hours, Weis and Julie Martin will screen 10 segments from Evenings: Theatre and Engineering Fonds, a collection that documents the collaborations between artists and engineers from Bell Laboratory at the 69th Regiment Armory in 1966.

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Sunday January 25 2015 Free

Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company

The troupe rings in the Chinese New Year with a performance, Lunar New Year Celebration, complete with dancers, live traditional music, acrobats and lion dancers.

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Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts (at Brooklyn College), Midwood Sunday January 25 2015

Sundays on Broadway

Critics' pick

Cathy Weis launches the winter season of her ongoing series, featuring film screenings, performances, readings and more.

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Sunday January 25 2015 Free

Dance from the Heart

Dancers Responding to AIDS presents a one-night benefit performance. The lineup includes ABT's Isabella Boylston and Cory Stearns in Liam Scarlett's With a Chance of Rain, Dorrance Dance, NYCB's Ashley Bouder and Amar Ramasar, and Marcelo Gomes with violinist Charles Yang.

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Joyce Theater, Chelsea Monday January 26 2015

Movement Research at the Judson Church

Critics' pick

Judson Mondays are here again. Pop by for a free evening of movement experimentation, curated by Neal Beasley, Bradley Ellis, devynn emory, Malcolm Low and Molly Poerstel.

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Judson Memorial Church, Greenwich Village Until Monday February 9 2015 Free

New York City Ballet Winter 2015

Critics' pick

With the New Year comes new opportunities to delight in masterworks like George Balanchine's timeless Serenade and La Valse and his two-act comedic story ballet Harlequinade. The season also includes Jerome Robbins's The Goldberg Variations and The Cage, a premiere by resident choreographer Justin Peck set to Aaron Copeland's Rodeo, last season's Pictures at an Exhibition by Alexei Ratmansky and the return of ballet master-in-chief Peter Martins's Romeo + Juliet. And for the third season, the company hosts its art series, in which it commissions an artist to create works inspired by its dancers. This season features Brooklyn's Dustin Yellin, whose glass scultptures of multidimensional human forms will be on view in the theater. On art series performances (Feb 12, 19 and 27), all tickets are $29, and audience members take home a comemorative, original artwork by Yellin.

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David H. Koch Theater (at Lincoln Center), Upper West Side Tuesday January 27 2015 - Sunday March 1 2015

Parsons Dance

The company performs Robert Battle's Train and Trey McIntyre's Hymn, as well as repertory works, including Parsons's classic Caught.

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Joyce Theater, Chelsea Tuesday January 27 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

Chris Ofili: When Shadows Were Shortest

In association with the New Museum's fall 2014 Research & Development season: CHOREOGRAPHY, artist Chris Ofili looks at his engagement with dance, specifically his part in the 2012 Royal Ballet premiere of Liam Scarlett's Diana and Actaeon, for which Ofili designed the sets and costumes.

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New Museum of Contemporary Art, Lower East Side Wednesday January 28 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE

CLASSCLASSCLASS offers a series of workshops at the New Museum. The teachers are Beth Gill, Ethan Cowan, Zena Bibler, Katie Schetlick, Brandin Steffensen, Belinda He and Jaamil Kosoko. On Wed 28 and Thu 29, lessons break midday with free lunch (1:30–2:30pm).

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New Museum of Contemporary Art, Lower East Side Wednesday January 28 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

Sydney Schiff Dance Project

Schiff offers Dry Bones: Resurrection of the Living, a new work that follows three women in their struggles with inherited traditions. The piece is set to original arrangements of Dvorák's New World Symphony and H.T. Burleigh's Dem (Dry) Bones for string quartet and voice.

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Judson Memorial Church, Greenwich Village Wednesday January 28 2015 Free

Robyn Orlin and Compagnie Jant-Bi

Critics' pick

The South African choreographer sets a new work, At the same time we were pointing a finger at you, we realized we were pointing three at ourselves..., on the Senegalese all-male troupe Jant-Bi. The piece celebrates "la danse du faux lion," a Senegalese coming-of-age ceremony to ward off fear of lions, while delving into the cultures and childhoods of its dancers through personal testimonies. The presentation is part of Peak Performances.

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Montclair State University, Alexander Kasser Theater, Montclair Thursday January 29 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

FLICfest 2015

The annual festival, founded and curated by Jeramy Zimmerman, showcases work by Jin Ju Song-Begin, CatScratch Theatre, Mana Hashimoto, Nicole Wolcott, Andre M. Zachary and John Zullo. Each evening includes two performances and a late-night cabaret; a single ticket guarantees entry to all three.

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Irondale Center, Fort Greene Thursday January 29 2015 - Saturday January 31 2015

Fresh Tracks 2015

Critics' pick

In its 50th-anniversary year, the performance and residency program showcases seven emerging artists. The pieces are Same as Sister (S.A.S.)/Briana Brown-Tipley and Hilary Brown's Women Times Three, Nico Brown's Nation, He Jin Jang's migrant-self the speed of a door, Niall Jones's a pleasure, 2014 edition, Julie Mayo's Buoys for Escapees and Lindsay Reuter's Good Evening, Strangers.

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New York Live Arts, Chelsea Thursday January 29 2015 - Saturday January 31 2015

Moriah Evans

Critics' pick

Evans unveils her Issue Project Room commission, Social Dance 1–8: Index, over eight intimate performances. Featuring dancers Maggie Cloud, Lizzie Feidelson, Benny Olk, Sarah Beth Percival and Jeremy Pheiffer, the work explores the relationships we build through choreography and the practice of dancing together and witnessing.

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Issue Project Room, Downtown Thursday January 29 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

"Super WE": Raja Feather Kelly and Tzveta Kassabova

The performers join together for a program of solos and duets. The pieces include two self-choreographed works: Kelly's 25 Cats Named SAM and One Blue Pussy, or Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth, or How Can You Dance When Every 7 Minutes Human Conversation Lapses Into Silence and Kassabova's Letter (to Ed), as well as the duet Be Still, My Heart, choreographed by Sara Pearson and the collaborative Super We.

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Danspace Project at St. Mark's Church in-the-Bowery, East Village Thursday January 29 2015 - Saturday January 31 2015

Never Before, Never Again

Triskelion Arts launches this festival, dedicated to improvisation. Over four evenings, a variety of companies from throughout the performance arts will invent works in real time.

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Triskelion Arts, Williamsburg Thursday January 29 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

43rd Dance on Camera

Critics' pick

The Film Society of Lincoln Center and Dance Films Association bring back their annual festival. Opening night showcases Girlchild Diary, a behind-the-scenes look at Meredith Monk as she revisits her seminal work, Education of a Girlchild. The festival closes with Desert Dancer, a British film directed by Richard Raymond based on the true story of Afshin Ghaffarian, who began an underground dance company during the volatile climate of Iran in 2009. Another highlight is a digital restoration of Bob Fosse's semiautobiographical masterpiece, All That Jazz. Many screenings include Q&A sessions with the subjects, directors and affiliates; visit filmlinc.com for more details.

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Walter Reade Theater (at Lincoln Center), Upper West Side Friday January 30 2015 - Tuesday February 3 2015

40th Annual Thunderbird American Indian Dancers' Dance Concert and Powwow

This yearly event features dances, stories and music from the Iroquois and native peoples of the northeast, southwest and Great Plains. The Thunderbird American Indian Dancers director will emcee the shows. All proceeds benefit Native American scholarship funds.

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Theater for the New City, East Village Friday January 30 2015 - Sunday February 8 2015

Daniel Léveillé Danse

Critics' pick

As part of Travelogues, Abrons's new dance series curated by Laurie Uprichard, the Montreal-based company performs Solitudes Solo.

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Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement, Lower East Side Friday January 30 2015 - Sunday February 1 2015

GAP Presents! The Pharmacy Project

The Brooklyn group performs artistic director Nora Petroliunas's Joan, based on a persona described as "ferocious and bold. She was born to lead the fight, living blind to the fact that she'll always be remembered."

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Sky Gallery, Gowanus Friday January 30 2015 - Saturday January 31 2015
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Comments

1 comments
ginga
ginga

i want now same iformation about free dance class, thanks