New York plans a packed schedule of outdoor performances with spring
However thanks to the the Covid-19 vaccine rollout and warmer weather condition on the horizon, New Yorkers will be dealt with to the art they like in 2021.
In truth, we will be immersed in it. Violin popups in the street. Broadway uses the Upper West Side. Musical efficiencies, a huge outside reading space with routine author readings, an outside cabaret phase on Hearst Plaza with reveals taking place day and night.
That’s simply part of Lincoln Center’s “Restart Stages,” a program intended to start the arts and restore New york city City. Performances begin on World Health Day, April 7, and tickets to occasions throughout 10 specifically produced outside locations will be provided to health care employees initially. Most of the shows will be free, on a first come first serve basis. The project is funded by support of the Lincoln Center Board of Directors and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF).
Henry Timms, President and CEO at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, told CNN that staff quickly discovered various ways to use the 16 acres of space the center has outside, and they worked with different institutions throughout the city to also be of service where they can.
“What we really wanted to do was use the outdoor space. So that was the genesis of the restart stage project. And also Lincoln Center, we’re a very proud New York institution, and we really wanted to play our part in bringing New York back,” Timms said. “There are lots of people who are very down on the future and down on New York.
“We are all feeling very much like we want to do our part in that recovery. So that’s been our general thinking. There’s so much focus on the economic recovery, which, of course, is essential, but tied to that, there has to be this human recovery, which is how do we all as human beings begin to come out with this period where we’ve been kept away from each other, we’ve been disconnected.”
Timms said having an arts revival will “help pull people together, connect people to themselves, to each other.”
A few of the groups Lincoln Center has partnered with include the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance (BAAD!), the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute, Harlem Week and the Harlem Arts Alliance, the Korean Cultural Center New York, and Weeksville Heritage Center.
Beginning next month, there will be film screenings by Film at Lincoln Center, evening concerts with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, a concert and cabaret Series by Lincoln Center Theater and dance workshops from New York City Ballet. There will also be open rehearsals with artists from many shows.
The shows will run days and evenings, and all occur outdoors with safety protocols in place for artists, audiences and staff.
“There will be lots of things going on at once,” Timms said, adding that “the phone is ringing” and the center is still opening up more shows. They are currently in discussions with Broadway producers to see how they can assist with outdoor space for plays and musicals.
“The phone is ringing now in the sense that people are realizing we’re doing this and realize that we want to partner in some interesting methods,” Timms said. “We are truly attempting to do this in an extremely open method.”
New York has also started an “Open Culture” program, which began March 1, and continues until October 31. It allows musicians, comedians and dancers to apply for a permit to perform outdoor performances and “to share their presents with a city in desperate requirement of being captivated.”
New York City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer tweeted of the program: “After a consentaneous vote in the Council the brand-new Open Culture program will bring tune, dance, funny, & efficiencies to our streets.”
Over the next few weeks, the performance schedule and free ticket distribution details will be available for The Delacorte Theater, which will reopen this summer, a spokesperson for The Public Theater told CNN.
The Shakespeare in the Park stage will feature a free production of “Merry Spouses,” which will run for 8-weeks, starting on July 5. Adapted from “The Merry Spouses of Windsor” and directed by Saheem Ali, the updated version will be set in Harlem and focus around immigrants from West Africa.
In true New York fashion, there’s also a festival where there’s no tickets required — you just have to be in the right place at the right time.
NY PopsUp features hundreds of pop-up performances, which will intersect with the daily lives of New Yorkers. The series of events aims to “renew the spirit and psychological wellness of New york city residents with the energy of live efficiency while starting New york city’s having a hard time live home entertainment sector.”
The shows will run through Labor Day and will total more than 1,000 performances. Performances are scheduled to celebrate both the 20th Anniversary of the Tribeca Film Festival (June 9 through 20) and the opening of Little Island at Pier 55 in June.
Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.