You won’t believe your ears or your pocketbooks. Queens is about to experience a streak of fantastic, free, outdoor concerts over the next five days. Listeners will be able to bring their folding chairs, blankets, and dancing shoes to Flushing, Long Island City, Queensbridge, and Sunnyside and enjoy everything from hip hop to polka to R&B. George Clinton, Parliament Funkadelic, and the Chi-Lites are the biggest acts, but some performers, such as minimalist musician Florent Ghys (above), are masters of lesser-known genres.
Here is the schedule:
- The Glukh Polka Band plays polkas, waltzes, and polonaises at Flushing Town Hall on July 12 at 2 pm.
- Florent Ghys mixes minimalist music with classical forms, musique concrète, and even clapping and hair dryers as part of the Bang on a Can series at Noguchi Museum on July 12 at 3 pm.
- The Chi-Lites, a group from the 1970s Chicago scene that was inducted into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame in 2000, kicks off the borough’s SummerStage series at Queensbridge Park on July 14 at 7 pm.
- Gerard Carelli & His Orchestra do a wide variety of swing music in Juniper Valley Park on July 14 at 7 pm.
- George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic, who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997, bring their unique funk to Queensbridge Park as part of SummerStage on July 15 at 7 pm.
- Yesterday and Today, a Beatles tribute band, jams near the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows Corona Park on July 15 at 7 pm.
- Large Professor, a hip hop star from Flushing, and Marley Marl, a hip hop star from Queensbridge, take the stage at Queensbridge Park as part of SummerStage on July 16 at 7 pm.
- Alí Bello & The Sweet Wire Band perform Latin jazz fusion in Sunnyside’s Bliss Plaza on July 16 at 6:30 pm.
- Soul Inscribed plays a mix of hip hop, dub, funk, and soul, while Jennifer Cendaña Armas tells diaspora stories as part of SummerStage in Queensbridge Park on July 17 at 7 pm.
Photo by Florent Ghys
George Clinton and Funkadelic highlight a series of free outdoor concerts this week. In addition to the live music, fun-seekers can choose a Colombia flower extravaganza (above), a noncompetitive bike race, a book festival, plenty of movies, and a night market. Here’s the rundown.
July 9, The Cab Calloway Orchestra, 7:30 pm. The Central Astoria LDC’s 2015 Waterfront Concert Series begins with a night of music from the Harlem Renaissance (1930s-1940s). Free. Astoria Park’s Great Lawn, Shore Boulevard between the Hell Gate Bridge and the pool.
July 9, Preview Screening of Boulevard with director Dito Montiel in person, 7 pm. The movie Boulevard premiered to warm praise at the Tribeca Film Festival, but its release was delayed after main actor Robin Williams’s death last summer. Now it premieres on July 10, but it screens at the Museum of the Moving Image the night before with Astoria-born director Montiel in attendance. $15. MMI, 36-01 35th Avenue, Kaufman Arts District.
July 9, Flushing Historical Diversity Tour, 6:30 pm. Official Queens historian Jack Eichenbaum walks and talks about the area’s past and present. $12/$6 for children. Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Boulevard.
As its name suggests, the Noguchi Museum displays sculpture, furniture, ceramics and other pieces by Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi. But this weekend, the Long Island City venue dabbles into everything from architecture to film to live music. On September 6th, Noguchi extends evening hours as it always does on the first Friday of each month and offers a pay-what-you-wish admission policy. At 6 pm, the museum facilitates a conversation around a single work of art, followed by a screening of 16 Acres, which explores the Ground Zero rebuilding effort. Presented with the Architecture and Design Film Festival, the movie tells the behind-the-scenes story through a series of first-person narratives, but without any narration. On September 8th, Noguchi hosts the summer’s final Music in the Garden event with Mantra Percussion (above) performing Michael Gordon’s Timber, a full-length concert composed for six percussionists playing on amplified two-by-fours using mallets and fingertips. The concert is offered in collaboration with Bang on a Can/Cantaloupe Music, one of the world’s best recognized ambassador’s of contemporary music.
It’s a match made in musical Nirvana. Yungchen Lhamo, a Lhasa native, has dazzled audiences around the world with her hypnotic a capella singing and deep spiritual commitment to Tibetan Buddhism. Born is Moscow, pianist Anton Batagov is an internationally renown post-minimalist composer who draws openly from his Buddhist philosophy and practice. These performers currently collaborate to create music based on movement and improvisation. This Sunday, Lhamo and Batagov will kick off the Music in the Garden Series, which the Noguchi Museum offers with Bang on a Can/Cantaloupe Music every second Sunday during the summer months. Details: Yungchen Lhamo and Anton Batagov, June 9, 3 pm, free with admission, Noguchi Museum, 9-01 33rd Rd., LIC. (Other concerts are July 14, Kyaw Kyaw Naing; Aug. 11, Vicky Chow; and Sept. 8, Mantra Percussion.)