Poet Mykki Blanco will perform at the East River Park Amphitheater on August 7 at 7 p.m.
In the final days of summer, City Parks’ SummerStage is at last returning to the East River Park with a series of (free!) live performances and events beginning this evening. The shows, which run the gamut from live music by the likes of Mykki Blanco, Instant Funk and Carol Williams, along with theater from the New York Neofuturists and an anniversary celebration for the Nuyorican Poets Cafe(we’ll be there!).
One interactive evening to watch for is Spectrum Dance Theater, which will perform at 8:00 p.m. on August 8th. The performance follows a master class, open to all levels, taught by award-winning dancer, Germaul Barnes. Barnes is currently the artistic director and founder of Viewsic Expressions Dance, a New York based dance organization that presents multimedia dance performances and educational residencies around the globe. In addition to having lots of teaching experience in New York City, he also received the 2003 New York Dance and Performance Award.
If reading any of this makes you want to dance (or swing by for a few shows), here’s more info on Friday’s dance events, along with the complete East River Park SummerStage schedule. The series runs through August 17th and take place at the East River Park Amphitheater.
Beginning this evening, King Kong comes to Summerstage at the East River Park bandshell. A few days ago, we spoke with the creators of this irreverent version of the classic story.
SummerStage 2012 at East River Park.
The City Parks Foundation is out today with its full lineup for SummerStage, including around a dozen late-season performances in the East River Park bandshell.
August 20-22, Randy Weiner, co-owner of “The Box” night club and director Alfred Preisser are coming together for a new version of “King Kong,” a music, dance, comedy spectacle set in the Bronx in the late 1970’s. According to a press materials, the production “celebrates the nascent forms of Hip-Hop music and graffiti art that grew out of the economically stressed South Bronx and went on to become one of the defining, most powerful and profitable artistic movements in the world.”
UCB at SummerStage. Photo by The Lo-Down.
A fun time was had by all last night at SummerStage in the East River Park Bandshell. The improv comedy group Upright Citizens Brigade performed with gusto as teams of their heavy weight “all stars” attempted to out-funny each other.
The Lo-Down was on hand for the free show, and we gave away a gift certificate to everyone’s favorite pancake shop, Clinton Street Bakery. Visit us on Facebook to find out who won — and join us at SummerStage again on Tuesday night and Thursday night for more great prizes this week. On Tuesday, it’s salsa night! Pioneer salsa singer José Alberto “El Canario” will be heating up the stage, along with the band 8 y Más and the iconic DJ Polito Vega. Click through for more photos from last night’s show.
it’s a beautiful night at East River Park for SummerStage. Upright Citizen’s Brigade will be performing at 7pm. Be sure to stop by The Lo-Down table to say hi and to enter our raffle. You could win a gift certificate to Clinton Street Baking Company.
The Niles Ford Urban Dance Collective is one of four dance companies performing this weekend in the East River Park Bandshell.
As we noted Monday, the massive free arts festival SummerStage is moving into the neighborhood, bringing a truly eclectic mix of performers to the East River Park Bandshell over the next two weeks. As part of the new, annual SummerStage Downtown series, the Bandshell will host acts as distant in genre as hip-hop producer-savant ARAABMUZIK and salsa crooner Jose Alberto (nick-name: “El Canario”) on consecutive evenings.
Tomorrow is opening night, dance is the focus, and the spirit is inclusive.
Faux-Real Theater Comapny's "Oedipus Rex."
Irene forced Summerstage to cancel a few performances at East River park. But tonight the free series in the amphitheater gets back on track. The Faux-Real Theater Company presents “Oedipus Rex.” Here’s the description:
The Greeks, like us, knew that Oedipus was going to gouge his eyes out, even before the play began. And yet they still came out in droves. Come see what all the fuss was about as The Faux-Real Theatre Company brings their Dionysian depiction of Oedipus, featuring an all-male cast of twelve utilizing the performance techniques of the ancient Greeks including: brightly colored wigs, fantastical costumes, and masks that act as megaphones. By incorporating the colorful aesthetic of these ancient performances and utilizing a broad physical style of acting powered by live music, songs and dancing, this work looks beyond the “fate versus free will” interpretations of this classic, to explore the alluring underbelly of this primal text. Their heightened approach reveals what is terrifying and vital in this most tragic of tragedies, enhancing the story’s power to roil our subconscious and to awaken the heroes within.
Tonight’s performance begins at 8 p.m. Tomorrow night (and Friday) the Faux-Real Theater presents another production, “Seven Against Thebes.” They’re also on stage Thursday with a second night of “Oedipus Rex.”
More details on Summerstage’s web site.
Step Afrika leads a "master class."
If you haven’t gotten the chance to catch Summerstage in East River Park, there are plenty of upcoming shows under the stars in the historic amphitheater. We stopped by Saturday night, where Step Afrika and Border Crossing Collective put on great performances. Step Afrika also conducted a “master class,” in which dance company members taught aspiring performers of all ages the basics of “stepping.” It was a good time, even if you weren’t brave enough to climb up on stage!
Tonight at 7 p.m., salsa singer Tito Rojas will be on stage. Tomorrow night it’s the Cold Crush Brothers, the pioneering hip hop group. And indie rocker Nathan Williams of the Wavves is coming up on Wednesday.
The schedule turns theatrical next week. The Classical Theater of Harlem brings its production of “Henry V,” Saturday, August 27-Monday, August 29. “Oedipus Rex,” from the Feaux-Real Theater Company takes its turn August 30-September 1. And the season wraps up with another Faux Real production, “Seven Against Thebes,” August 31 and September 2.
For more information on any of these productions, head over to Summerstage’s web site. Summerstage is produced by the non-profit, City Parks Foundation. All of the shows are free.
After a successful first season this past year, WQXR and WNYC’s Greene Space have teamed up with City Park’s SummerStage for this year’s Battle of the Boroughs Talent Quest 2011. They write: The Greene Space’s Battle of the Boroughs is open to submissions frombands, ensembles, instrumentalists, vocalists, DJs and spoken word artists. All genres are welcome! A line-up of several acts from each borough will be selected to perform at The Greene Space, culminating in a final round with winners from each borough.
SummerStage is celebrating it’s 25th anniversary and City Parks Foundation is dedicating the season to “several artistic movements that were developed in New York City neighborhoods and to key artists who created – or were inspired by – those artistic developments.” SO, the Nuyorican Poets Cafe will head uptown tomorrow night for what looks to be a fabulous show in Central Park.