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SummerStage Downtown Series Opens Friday

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Photo: Whitness Relocation, courtesy of SummerStage

This Friday, New York’s largest free performing arts festival is setting up shop in the East River Park Bandshell for the start of its annual two-week SummerStage Downtown Series. With a mix of hip-hop, R&B, world music, dance, theater, comedy and family programming, there’s something for everyone.

Highlights include a concert by master salsa singer José Alberto “El Canario,” a battle between legendary hip-hop DJs Pete Rock and Premier, and an evening of live music, performance art, poetry, aerialists and food in celebration of Two Boots 25th Anniversary.

Opening weekend kicks off with two dance programs: the eleven member White Wave Young Soon Kim Dance Company and DoubleTake Dance perform on Friday; Eleone Dance Theatre and the Niles Ford/Urban Dance Collective are up on Saturday. If watching dance isn’t enough, Lower East Siders will also have a chance to move. Master classes are being given before each show. Friday, Desmond Richardson, former Alvin Ailey star and founder of Complexions Contemporary Ballet will be on hand to teach some of his groundbreaking mix of method, style and culture.

The weekend closes on Sunday with a night of all-star improve courtesy of the cutting edge improv troupe, The Upright Citizens Brigade.

SummerStage Downtown Series // August 17 – 30 // East River Bandshell // Grand Street and FDR Drive // FREE // www.SummerStage.org


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  1. Go Hammer. Sadly under promoted and under imbibed with proper wine that they allow in “other” parks. Central for one. Get with it NYC.

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