Lincoln Center

Lincoln Center to Offer Free Shows in New ‘Summer for the City'

Lincoln Center announced a new initiative called "Summer for the City," which includes three months of free programming for the upcoming season.

Ali Kashfi

If you're looking to catch a free performance or enjoy what New York City can offer this summer, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (LCPA) aims to take a new approach by hosting hundreds of free events under the "Summer for the City" initiative.

Launched by Shanta Thake, Lincoln Center's Chief Artistic Officer, the three-month program plans to engage the entire campus with over 1,000 artists, 300 events and 10 outdoor stages.

"We all seek a remedy for the upheaval and pain of the past two years. Art can
help provide it: from group sing-alongs to celebrations of important milestones missed or truncated. We must empower ourselves to let joy back in, together,” said Henry Timms, President and CEO of Lincoln Center.

The season runs from May 14 through August 14 with the theme "Rejoice, Reclaim, Remember," representing a city healing during the unprecedented COVID times.

This comes after last year's "Restart Stages", which created an outdoor performing space to lift the arts during the pandemic, as well as this spring's added "choose what you pay" model for ticketing.

"Earlier this year, we piloted 'Choose-What-You-Pay' with our American Songbook series, to help ensure greater access. The pilot has been very successful—70% have been first-time LCPA ticket buyers which is very exciting, and we are nearly completely sold out," Thake told NBC New York.

Performances include a variety of entertainment, such as large-scale sing-alongs, dance festivals, sculptural installations, films and pop-up shows.

For those wishing to strut their stuff, Lincoln Center plans to reinvent the Josie Robertson Plaza and open the city's largest outdoor dance floor, "The Oasis" complete with a 10' disco ball.

Entry to "Summer for the City" events will be available for free via general admission, first-come, first-served. A free advanced reservation service for certain exhibits will be an option, giving guests priority access to book ahead.

"Choose what you pay" tickets will also extend into the summer season.

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