Top Free Concerts in NYC Summer 2016
When it comes to arts and culture, New York City is surely the greatest city in the world. Best of all, to score tickets to some great shows this season, you won’t need to break the bank. You won’t even need to open your wallet. Here’s our guide to the best free concerts in NYC happening this summer, all of which are family friendly.
Year after year, the hot weather brings SummerStage to Central Park. Thousands of people from the city and beyond visit to check out the great lineup of free live shows. SummerStage is located at Rumsey Playfield, just off the 5th Avenue and 69th Street entrance to Central Park. The outdoor venue welcomes a long series of summer concerts throughout June, July, August and September. The lineup always runs the gamut from family shows to punk rock, spoken word to world music and everything in between.
Highlights of the SummerStage concerts in NYC this year include:
The Feelies, the low-key indie-rock group (7/18),
Unknown Mortal Orchestra, psych rockers with dance diva Empress Of (7/30),
Jerry Garcia Symphonic Celebration, the classical take on the Grateful Dead, (8/8),
Chicago the musical 20th anniversary performance (8/31).
SummerStage is also holding New York concerts in July 2016 at other locations including Crotona Park and St. Mary’s Park. Be sure to check out the full lineup so you don’t miss any great music! Almost all of SummerStage concerts are free, but not all, with that being said. Proceeds from some of the bigger-name acts fund the rest of the year’s programming.
Free Classical Concerts
New York City’s frequent free orchestra and symphony performances make it easy all summer long. Regardless of whether you’re a die-hard lover of classical music or just like to get a regular dose of culture. Just to name a few, there’s the:
Young Composers Concert Series featuring Claire Chase on flute at Hearst Plaza (7/28)
East Coast Chamber Orchestra at the Naumberg Bandshell (8/2),
Likewise, the Met Opera Summer Recital Series puts on opera performances gratis all over the five boroughs. Locations include Central Park, Clove Lakes Park in Staten Island and Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Free Summer Festivals in NYC
What’s better than one free concert? A whole day of free concerts! This year, New York is also hosting several totally free musical festivals featuring a range of great performers. The Roots are headlining the Lowdown Hudson Music Fest alongside Southern rockers Drive-By Truckers. Many other diverse acts will join them at Brookfield Place Waterfront Plaza for this great free two-day festival (7/12 and 7/13). The Queen’s Library Battle of the Bands is at Kupferberg Center for the Arts. It’s another great opportunity to discover some talented, yet undiscovered acts (7/14). The Lincoln Center Out of Doors series will devote a whole day to celebrating the late great Lou Reed with tons of cover performances and lyric readings (7/30).
Interested in checking out some NYC summer concerts in 2016? You have no excuse not to with this jam-packed schedule of free events! Get out there and have a great summer full of awesome live music.