This event is New York City’s beloved outdoor performing arts festival, bringing nearly 90 free and benefit shows to Central Park and 12 neighborhood parks across the five boroughs. Returning with a full season of shows this year, “SummerStage” will celebrate New York’s revival and the festival’s return to 12 local community parks across the city celebrating culture at a time when neighborhood parks have never been more crucial to the city’s wellbeing. The season will once again showcase established and emerging artists, presenting distinctly New York genres including salsa, jazz, hip-hop, indie rock, reggae, Afrobeat, soul, pop, global, contemporary dance, and many more. You may view the official “SummerStage 2022” season announcement video below.
We are so happy to be back in local neighborhood parks after a two-year hiatus and to be able to once again build our newly refurbished flagship concert venue in Central Park… Parks have always been neighborhood gathering spaces, but the pandemic brought to light just how absolutely critical parks are to our city’s health. We are thrilled to be able to bring neighbors together in their parks to enjoy a diverse, representative line-up that is reflective of our city’s rich cultural fabric.
Heather Lubov, City Parks Foundation’s Executive Director
Citywide parks and venues hosting “SummerStage” this season include Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem, Von King Park and The Coney Island Amphitheater in Brooklyn, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens, Crotona Park in the Bronx, Corporal Thompson Park in Staten Island, as well as the newly refurbished “SummerStage” flagship venue at Rumsey Playfield in Central Park. All performances will be free and open to the public, except for benefit concerts, and select shows will also be live-streamed on SummerStageAnywhere.org. A digital season brochure is available now at SummerStage.org.
“SummerStage” prides itself on creating a season that brings together compelling artists, diverse music styles and cultural offerings to engage fans from all over the city – and the world – and the 2022 season will continue that legacy. Opening the season on Saturday, June 11 in Central Park will be a free performance from legendary jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock with Keyon Harrold opening in association with the Blue Note Jazz Festival.
The season’s free shows will take audiences on an artistic journey across the world via the five boroughs. Aussie BBQ in Central Park will introduce fans to the eclectic sounds of some of Australia’s leading music artists including indie rock band You Am I, indigenous rapper Baker Boy and Aboriginal electronic music duo Electric Fields on June 18, while Francophiles will say merci to the annual Fête de la Musique lineup on June 21 in Central Park headlined by French hip hop icon MC Solaar. Brazilian music fans can enjoy the high-energy modern Carnaval stylings of Monobloco with Trinbagonian Nailah Blackman and Batalá on June 26 in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, and an exciting K-Pop lineup of Brave Girls, Golden Child and AleXa, in association with Korean Culture Center New York, at Central Park on July 10. Other global music sensations taking the stages will include and Brazilian Latin Grammy’s Lifetime Achievement Awardee Ney Matogrosso with Brazilian-Mexican folk-rock group Francisco El Hombre and queer duo Fado Bicha on July 17 in Central Park; the king of bachata “El Rey Supremo” Luis Vargas with Dominican artist El Gran Alcover and Latin pop group Grupo De Ahora on August 7 in Central Park; and Ghanaian music star Shatta Wale who will bring his incredible dancehall to Crotona Park on August 13.
The 2022 “SummerStage” festival will also feature benefit shows in Central Park to help support City Parks Foundation’s free performances. Confirmed shows on sale now include American rock band Modest Mouse with indie rock band The Cribs on June 8 and 9; Trombone Shorty’s Voodoo Threauxdown with funk, hip-hop group Tank and the Bangas, rapper Big Freedia, percussionist Cyril Neville and others on June 13; American musician and bandleader George Clinton & his collective Parliament Funkadelic with rock band Dopapod and soul music band Pimps of Joytime on June 15; Scottish indie rock band Belle & Sebastian with Los Bitchos on June 16; pop singer-songwriter Andy Grammer and neo-soul band Fitz and The Tantrums on August 4; The Wild Hearts Tour with indie rock vocalist Sharon Van Etten, indie-folk, singer-songwriter Angel Olsen, and singer and multiinstrumentalist Julien Baker on August 20 and 21. Benefit concerts are produced by The Bowery Presents; Blue Note Jazz Festival is producing the George Clinton performances. More benefit shows will be announced throughout the season.
New York City’s own distinct music styles and enigmatic artists will also be on full display this summer. Brooklyn-born singer/songwriter/pianist and former Snarky Puppy member Cory Henry will bring his inspiring compositions to Central Park on July 20, and one of NYC’s longest-running iconic underground dance parties Basement Bhangra helmed by DJ Rekha will return for its 25th anniversary celebrations on August 6 in Central Park. Fans of New York City’s homegrown Latin-infused freestyle sound will enjoy Freestyle king George Lamond and Salsa maestro Tony Vega on August 11 in Crotona Park.
Each season, “SummerStage” has always presented a festival full of talent as diverse and broad as the communities that host these performances in parks across all five borough… The artists we are presenting this season not only represent their own distinct cultures but reflect the global diversity that truly matches the spirit of New York City.
Erika Elliott, Executive Artistic Director of “SummerStage”
“SummerStage” will again offer a free outdoor screening of the Oscar and Grammy award-winning documentary “Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)” for its second year on June 17, commemorating Juneteenth. The film, which also opens the season of shows in neighborhood parks citywide, will be shown in Marcus Garvey Park, where The Harlem Cultural Festival was originally situated more than 50 years ago.
Additionally, “SummerStage” will pay tribute this season to cultural icons and pioneers with special performances by R&B legends Force MDs & Friends DJ S1 and Bugsy Buggs who will come together to celebrate the life of founding member, Staten Island’s very own Jessie Lee Daniels on August 7 in Corporal Thompson Park; and A Greg Tate Tribute Concert featuring Burnt Sugar Danz, Harriet Tubman, Resistance Revival Chorus and more on August 20 at Marcus Garvey Park honoring the legendary Harlem-based music writer and long-time cultural critic.
The art of dance will shine through this “SummerStage” season with a compelling program of women-led companies and BIPOC women leaders. Performances will include New York-based street and Club dance company helmed by Tatiana Desardouin, Passionfruit Dance Company, on July 13 in Central Park along with Art Move Concept from France, making their festival debut; Nai Ni Chen Dance Company with Les Ballet Afrik and Ayodele Casel on July 15 in a co-presentation with ALL ARTS in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park; modern dance company Dallas Black Dance Theatre on July 23 in Von King Park; Brooklyn based Maimouna Keita African Dance Company on August 5 in Corporal Thompson Park; repertory highlights from Urban Bush Women in Crotona Park on August 12; Lindy Hop, solo jazz and house scenes company LaTasha Barnes Dance on August 19 in Marcus Garvey Park; and one of America’s premier contemporary dance companies, Hubbard St Dance Chicago on August 28 in Central Park with more performances to be announced.
“SummerStage” is also thrilled to return for a six-show series at The Coney Island Amphitheater at the Coney Island Boardwalk in Brooklyn. These free performances will include R&B icons Stephanie Mills, Keni Burke, Ted Smooth and DJ J-Ronin on June 25; and Puerto Rican Power, Domingo Quinones with Lower East Salsa on July 10; and Spread Love Hip-Hop Jam Hosted by Ralph McDaniels and DJ Scratch on August 11. Additional shows will be announced at a later date.
The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, New York City’s annual salute to the eponymous late saxophonist, will return in its 30th year for a three-day celebration of live jazz in the neighborhoods near where Parker worked and lived, including Harlem’s historic Marcus Garvey Park and Tompkins Square Park in the East Village. Each year, some of the finest jazz musicians in the world are assembled who reflect “the Bird’s” musical individuality and genius, to promote appreciation for this highly influential and world-renowned artist. Running August 26 to August 28, the 30th anniversary will bring together storied, veteran players and the next generation of jazz artists including jazz singer and her big band Jazzmeia and Her Noble Force, Brooklyn-born tap dancer Calvin Booker On Tap & Friends; American trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard featuring the E-Collective and Turtle Island Quartet, NEA Jazz Master bassist Buster Williams featuring his quartet Something More and others; and avant-garde jazz legendary saxophonist Archie Shepp with genre-bending pianist Jason Moran, multi-award winning saxophonist Melissa Aldana, world renowned trumpeter Bria Skonberg, and leader in the field and mentor guitarist Pasquale Grasso with his nostalgic sound. Additional jazz events will also be held across the city to celebrate the festival, more details to be announced on www.SummerStage.org.
“SummerStage” will once again partner with Rooftop Films to feature international short films prior to Central Park shows this season, highlighting the work of filmmakers whose voices and stories complement the featured musical performers and represent the vibrant international communities of the city. The screenings will include official selections from Rooftop Films’ 26th anniversary Summer Series, the nation’s largest outdoor showcase for new independent films. Films will be announced at a later date.
As a women-run festival with a mission of diversity and inclusion, since 2019 “SummerStage” has helped to transform the future of the music industry by participating in the PRS Foundation’s international Keychange pledge, presenting an annual lineup that features a 50:50 gender balance. SummerStage is one of the few local festivals that has achieved this goal. SummerStage is committed to gender and racial equity in its programming, and in 2021, 52% of artists participating in the in-person festival were women or non-binary, and 95% identified as BIPOC.
Capital One is excited to continue our long-standing support for “SummerStage” as the title sponsor… Now more than ever we are committed to both supporting and celebrating New York’s revival. Vibrant parks, free live music, dance performances, and this festival’s mission of diversity and inclusion are critical to revitalizing our neighborhoods and building a sense of community. We are honored to play a role in New York City’s revival by sponsoring “SummerStage” performances again this year and keeping them free and open for all New Yorkers to enjoy.”
Andy Ramamoorthy, Executive Vice President, Commercial Banking and New York City Market President, Capital One
The whimsical artwork for this season was created by Brooklyn-based, South Korean-born illustrator, artist, muralist, and educator Hyesu Lee, whose work has been featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Time Out New York, Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times, among other outlets. The art colorfully captures the vibrancy, the energy, and the joy that characterizes this, and every “SummerStage” lineup.
For the most up-to-date scheduling and lineup for all “SummerStage” programming, follow “SummerStage” via the social media handles below and visit www.SummerStage.org for all festival information.