Presented as part of this year’s Festival of New York, Summer for the City builds on the success of Lincoln Center’s 2021 Restart Stages, which created an outdoor performing arts center so that the arts could continue during the pandemic. That initiative attracted an in-person audience of more than 250,000, nearly a quarter of whom were visiting Lincoln Center for the first time.
Summer for the City is animating every corner of the outdoor campus across ten stages, as well as some of the indoor venues, with more than 300 artistic and civic activations. The schedule of events has been curated to help deepen Lincoln Center’s service to particular communities, including Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI), Black, Indigenous, Latinx/e, and LGBTQIA, along with expanding offerings for families with concerts, workshops, story times, and family dance days, and presenting a multitude of events that celebrate and center deaf and disabled identity.
Among the variety of offerings are the following free or pay-what-you-choose dance events:
On August 6-7, Lincoln Center presents Reunions, a two-night dance festival curated by renowned choreographer and MacArthur Fellow Kyle Abraham, featuring electrifying alumni of his company A.I.M by Kyle Abraham. Rena Butler, Kayla Farish, Vinson Fraley, Nicole Mannerino, Chalvar Monteiro, Jie-Hung Connie Shiau, and Maleek Washington each choreograph their own distinctive works in their Lincoln Center debuts outdoors.
Later in the evening on 8/6, as part of the inaugural Festival of New York, Lincoln Center joins forces with the New York Public Library, in partnership with the Brooklyn Public Library and Queens Public Library, to get New Yorkers across all five boroughs on their feet for the largest simultaneous dance party the city has ever seen. Dance Party NYC celebrates the comeback of New York at The Oasis with a stellar Silent Disco led by DJ Bill Coleman under a giant sparkling ten-foot disco ball.
Then, from August 11-13, A.I.M by Kyle Abraham returns with the NYC debut of Requiem: Fire in the Air of Earth, co-commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Boston Celebrity Series, International Summer Festival Kampnagel, Stanford Live at Stanford University, and the University Musical Society of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Abraham and pioneering producer, composer, and electronic dance music artist Jlin joined forces to create the new work, exploring death and reincarnation through a reimagining of Mozart’s Requiem in d minor. Transformed into an electronic opus that memorializes ritual, mourning, and rebirth, Jlin performs it live onstage with ten dancers from Abraham’s company.
After a series of sold-out tour-de-force performances in last summer’s Restart Stages, the BAAND Together Dance Festival is back at Lincoln Center, with dancers and pieces from five of NYC’s most iconic dance companies – Ballet Hispánico, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, and Dance Theatre of Harlem – sharing the spotlight and an outdoor stage. Each night from August 9-13, audiences can enjoy a unique and exciting evening of programming, curated collaboratively by the companies’ artistic directors, with repertory favorites, new work, and a world premiere by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa – One for All, commissioned by Lincoln Center, featuring dancers from all five companies, and set to “Manteca” by Funky Lowlives/Dizzy Gillespie. In the afternoons, each organization will also bring its unique teaching style to the Lincoln Center campus with daily education workshops, appropriate for all ages.
In a joint statement, Artistic Directors Robert Battle (Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater), Kevin McKenzie (American Ballet Theatre), Eduardo Vilaro (Ballet Hispánico), Virginia Johnson (Dance Theatre of Harlem), and Jonathan Stafford (New York City Ballet, with Associate Artistic Director Wendy Whelan) noted: “Last year’s BAAND Together Dance Festival was a resounding success, proof that New York audiences are excited for their beloved dance companies to return to the stage. This year we will go beyond performing side by side and do so together, as a unified dance family, through an exciting new work by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. This new work is a testament to our commitment for building new avenues of cultural innovation, dialogue, and accessibility for our incredible city.”
Summer for the City plays through Sunday, August 14, 2022, at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Damrosch Park, The Oasis on Josie Robertson Plaza, the David Rubenstein Atrium, The Deck, Hearst Plaza, and The Speakeasy on Jaffe Drive, NYC. For more information about tickets and advance registration, call (212) 875-5456, or go online. At present, proof of COVID-19 vaccination and masks are no longer required; however, face coverings are welcome and everyone is encouraged to complete the vaccination and booster series before attending. Please stay home if you do not feel well, if you have come in contact recently with someone who has tested positive for COVID, or you have recently tested positive.