Summer events calendar

The master list of stuff not to miss this summer.

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JUNE | JULY | AUGUST | ALL SUMMER


Shakespeare in the Park

June

Shakespeare in the Park: Hamlet


When: May 27–Jun 29 8pm; Jun 19 at 8:30pm
Where: Delacorte Theater, Central Park
This beloved tradition, produced by the Public Theater, continues this year with perhaps the Bard's most quoted work. See all those pithy chestnuts in their original context. Tickets are free, but plan to queue early if you want a pair.
http://www.publictheater.org

JVC Jazz Festival


When: Various dates and times, Jun 15–Jun 28
Where: Various locations
These two weeks of jazz offer a repertoire rich enough to exhaust the most devoted aficionado. See legends Herbie Hancock, Al Green and Dianne Reeves; snap your fingers to innovative ensembles; shimmy to bossa nova; and enjoy Jill Scott, Mos Def or Carl Craig showing off their jazz-influenced work.
jazz.jvc.com

Met Summer Concert


When: Jun 20 at 8pm
Where: Prospect Park
You don't need to fight for Mariah Carey tickets; opera is always full of divas. At this free, single-night performance, Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna will perform a medley of "greatest hits" from Verdi, Puccini, Donizetti, Massenet, Catalani and others. It might be your only chance to enjoy an aria while munching on a bucket of chicken.
http://www.metoperafamily.org

Mermaid Parade


When: Jun 21 2–5:30pm
Where: The boardwalk from W 10th St to W 16th St, then north to Surf Ave and east to W 10th St, Coney Island, Brooklyn
This nautical-themed arts fair is like the Mardi Gras of Coney Island (no beads, but there may be ill-advised nudity). Floats, performers, drill teams and antique cars follow a celebrity King Neptune and Queen Mermaid to the beach as they "officially" open the ocean for the summer.
coneyisland.com/mermaid.shtml

Washington Square Music Festival


When: Jun 21 at 5pm; Jul 8, 15, 22, 29 at 8pm.
Where: Washington Square Park
(In case of rain: New York University’s Frederick Loewe Theatre, 34 W 4th St at Greene St)
Settle in for a showcase of featured musicians from Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan and New York City Opera orchestras and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The event is free and seating is first-come, first-served.
washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org

Philharmonic in the Parks


When: Jun 24 at 8pm
Where: Great Lawn, Central Park
The debut of this traveling classical-music series takes place in the granddaddy of NYC parks. Conductor Bramwell Tovey leads a program heavy on traditional crowd-pleasers, including Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture and Sousa marches.
http://nyphil.org

JUNE | JULY | AUGUST | ALL SUMMER


Stephen Malkmus performs at this year's Siren Festival

July

Summer Play Festival


When: Jul 1–27, various dates and times
Where: The Public Theater
This edgy, exciting series shines the spotlight on plays and musicals written by new and emerging playwrights. Tickets are available beginning June 1.
spfnyc.com, publictheater.org

Lincoln Center Festival


When: Jul 2–27, various dates and times
Where: Lincoln Center
Take in eclectic performances across a variety of disciplines. This year's pot of goodies includes the postwar opera Die Soldaten; three one-man Samuel Beckett dramas starring Ralph Fiennes, Barry McGovern and Liam Neeson; William Forsythe’s masterpiece Impressing the Czar and Euripides’ The Bacchae, starring Alan Cumming, not to mention nights of ballet and modern dance.
http://www.lincolncenter.org

Midsummer Night Swing


When: Tue–Sat 6:30–10pm, Jul 8-26
Where: Damrosch Park, W 62nd St at Amsterdam Ave
Back for its 20th season, this participant-driven series offers plenty of opportunities to swing, tango, rumba, mambo or salsa your way into your partner’s heart. (If you're rusty, arrive early for free dance lessons.) Musical accompaniment ranges from a Balkan brass band to underground club music and Catalan rumba. Also, turn the rug rats into rug cutters at two kids' days.
lincolncenter.org

Washington Square Music Festival


When: Jul 8, 15, 22, 29 at 8 pm
Where: Washington Square Park
(In case of rain: New York University’s Frederick Loewe Theatre, 34 W 4th at Greene St)
On Tuesdays in July (except Tuesday 1), take in a showcase of featured musicians from Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan and New York City Opera orchestras, as well as the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The event is free and seating is first-come, first-served.
washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org

Broadway in Bryant Park


When: Jul 10–Aug 15 12:30–1:30pm.
Where: Bryant Park
Performers in the most popular shows on and Off Broadway belt their biggest hits during the lunchtime hour. This year’s lineup includes snippets from Gypsy, Rent and In the Heights, among others.
bryantpark.org/calendar/broadway.php

Siren Festival


When: Jul 19 noon–9pm
Where: Coney IslandThis free all-day, all-ages music festival stars international, national, and local bands and DJs performing on two outdoor stages along the Coney Island boardwalk. Scheduled performers include Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, Broken Social Scene, the Helio Sequence, Beach House and Times New Viking.
http://www.villagevoice.com/siren/index.php

Shakespeare in the Park presents: Hair


When: Jul 22–Aug 17 8pm
Where: Delacorte Theater, Central Park
Go for the nudity; stay for the still-relevant themes of bohemian angst, sexual exploration and outrage over an unwanted war. Tickets are free, but you'd better plan to queue early if you want a pair.
http://www.publictheater.org/content/view/126/219/

Mostly Mozart Festival


When: Jul 28–Aug 27, various dates and times
Where: Lincoln Center
The Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, under the conduction of Louis Langrée, performs a series of eight concerts. It's not all music by the series’s namesake, however; look for cutting-edge work from a Samoan-born theater artist and other young talents. Free preview concert tickets go up for grabs on July 27 at 10am; otherwise expect to pay a tidy sum ranging from $35–$85.
http://www.lincolncenter.org

JUNE | JULY | AUGUST | ALL SUMMER


Spam Alltstars perform at Lincoln Center Out of Doors

August

Broadway in Bryant Park


When: Jul 10–Aug 15, 12:30–1:30pm
Where: Bryant Park
The most popular shows on and off Broadway perform their biggest hits during the lunchtime hour. This year’s lineup includes snippets from Gypsy, Rent and In the Heights, among others.
bryantpark.org/calendar/broadway.php

Shakespeare in the Park presents: Hair


When: Jul 22–Aug 17 8pm
Where: Delacorte Theater, Central ParkGo for the nudity; stay for the still-relevant themes of bohemian angst, sexual exploration and outrage over an unwanted war. Tickets are free, but you'd better plan to queue early if you want a pair.
http://www.publictheater.org

Mostly Mozart Festival


When: Jul 28–Aug 27, various dates and times
Where: Lincoln Center
The Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, under the conduction of Louis Langrée, performs a series of eight concerts. It's not all music by the series’s namesake, however; look for cutting-edge work from a Samoan-born theater artist and other young talents. Free preview concert tickets go up for grabs on July 27 at 10am; otherwise expect to pay a tidy sum ranging from $35–$85.
http://www.lincolncenter.org

Lincoln Center Out Of Doors


When: Aug 7–24, various dates and times
Where: Lincoln Center
At this open-air overflow of culture, sample from more than 100 different events ranging from world music to cool jazz, and from internationally acclaimed dance to fun, kid-friendly concerts.
http://www.lincolncenter.org

U.S. Open


When: Aug 19–Sept 7, various dates and times
Where: USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center
This year marks the tournament’s 30th anniversary at its current home. Does that mean that joker Roddick—or another American talent—will rise to the occasion? Who knows, but you can be sure the raucous New York crowds won't disappoint.
http://www.usopen.org/

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival


When: Aug 23, 24 at 3pm
Where: Marcus Garvey Park, 124th St at Mt. Morris Park (Aug 23), and Tompkins Square Park, E 8th St between Aves A and B (Aug 24)
Virtuoso performers pay homage to the greatest jazz innovator of them all at two free park concerts in the neighborhoods where Bird lived and worked. Pianists Hank Jones and Randy Weston headline.
cityparksfoundation.org

JUNE | JULY | AUGUST | ALL SUMMER

summer 2008 events outdoor concerts parks
Sonic Youth perform at River to River July 4

All Summer

Harlem Meer Performance Festival


When: Sundays 2–4pm, May 25–Sept 28
Where: Charles A. Dana Discovery Center, Central Park, 110th St between Fifth Ave and Malcolm X Blvd (Lenox Ave)
Save on vacation airfare: The Harlem Meer Festival brings the world (or at least its music) to your doorstep. Via its various performances, sample African, Brazilian and Colombian rhythms; Cuban, flamenco and salsa styles; and much more.
centralparknyc.org

River To River Festival


When: May 28 – Sept 15, various dates and times
Where: various locations
Founded after September 11th, 2001, to bring culture downtown in the summer, the River to River festival puts on dance and music shows, movies, readings and other events all around lower Manhattan. While there is something for nearly every taste, a few highlights include the Bang on a Can marathon (May 31), a children's day (June 14), Sonic Youth (July 4) and the music of Johnny Cash (July 26).
http://www.rivertorivernyc.com/

Rhythm & Blues Festival


When: Thursdays, June 5 through August 7, 12pm – 2pm.
Where: MetroTech Center
See leading R&B performers on the regular at this free outdoor summer concert series. Among the mix of debuting and acclaimed musicians slated to croon this year are Otis Clay, Ryan Shaw, Alice Smith and Richie Havens.
bam.org/events/metrotech.aspx

Pool Parties at McCarren Park


When: Jun 6–Aug 25, various dates and times
Where: McCarren Park Pool
Casual yet electric concerts at a public pool in Brooklyn? These shows would easily be hipster overload if they weren't so damned good. On deck this summer are white-hot artists such as M.I.A., Death Cab for Cutie and Wilco. Entrance is free—first come, first served.
thepoolparties.com

Celebrate Brooklyn!


When: Jun 12–Aug 8, various dates and times
Where: Prospect Park Bandshell
Enjoy performances various nights by performers such as Isaac Hayes, the Brazilian Girls and the Mark Morris Dance Group. Concerts are free, unless you party VIP (where tickets for galalike seating and events begin at $300).
briconline.org

Central Park SummerStage


When: Jun 13–Aug 17, various dates and times
Where: Central Park, Rumsey Playfield
Central Park's most zeitgeisty performance series is once again loaded with scorching acts like Vampire Weekend, Yael Naim and comedian Mike Birbiglia. One common theme that unites the wide-ranging entertainers: You need to be there early to see them. Standing space is more vigorously contested than the 6 trains on Monday.
http://www.summerstage.org/

Madison Square Music


When: Jun 18–Aug 6, 7pm
Where: Madison Square
Bring a blanket to sit on (no chairs allowed!) and enjoy the free concerts on select summer Wednesdays. Grammy-nominated Ryan Shaw tops a varied slate of musicians who will fill the Flatiron air with sweet notes.
https://www.madisonsquarepark.org

Summer in the Square


When: Thursdays, Jun 19–Aug 14 5:30pm; Jun 19 12:30pm
Where: Union Square
Union Square Partnership hosts a free afternoon series filled with midday kids' concerts, postlunch yoga classes and early evening music shows. Bring the youngsters to see acts like Astrograss or Hot Peas ’N Butter, power through a couple of Warrior II poses, then stay for adult-oriented music from the likes of the New School jazz band or the Nashville Attitude.
http://unionsquarenyc.org

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