Just Do Art: The Free Admission Edition

Daily through June 24, the ARChive of Contemporary Music’s summer sale raises funds for the nonprofit by allowing you to peruse and purchase their considerable supply of redundant stock. | Photo courtesy of ARC

THE ARC SIZZLIN’ SUMMER RECORD + CD SALE | Whether it pops, rocks, swings, or just plain sizzles — one stop at this jam-packed brick and mortar music sale will secure many, many selections destined for heavy rotation on your summer playlist. So before the sun sets on June 24, make a covenant to visit ARC — Tribeca’s ARChive of Contemporary Music — a nonprofit archive, library, and research center “dedicated to saving and digitizing copies of all popular music recordings worldwide.” And do they ever. With a collection numbering in the millions and donations pouring in all the time from music labels and private collections, this record and CD sale offers up tens of thousands of their redundant stock at ridiculously discounted prices, plus a sweet selection of music-themed books, posters, DVDs, and memorabilia. Cheaper than downloading, it’s also a lot more fun (the tactile experience of flipping through rows and rows of those wooden bins always yields a few unexpected items utterly necessary for your collection). So get it while it’s hot — and become an ARC member while you’re there. That way, you’ll secure an invite to the preview night of December’s sale, where dedicated music lovers commune, scoop up the stock before it’s available to the general public, and enjoy free food and drink (at the summer sale’s preview, it was compliments of Two Boots Pizza and City Winery).

Free admission. Open to the public daily through June 24, 11am–6pm at the ARChive of Contemporary Music (54 White St., btw. Church & Broadway). Visit arcmusic.org, call 212-226-6967, or email info@arcmusic.org.

The Frank Lacy Sextet (fronted by Kuumba Frank Lacy, seen here) and guest vocalist Liz Torres will close out the Washington Square Music Festival’s 60th season on June 26. | Photo by Sally J. Bair

THE WASHINGTON SQUARE MUSIC FESTIVAL | Taking place in one of the city’s great alfresco concert settings, and with an equally iconic rainspace at the ready, the Washington Square Music Festival has two more free nights of dynamic performances, as part of their 60th season celebration. On June 19, Music Director Lutz Rath conducts the Festival Chamber Ensemble in a program ranging from baroque (Jan Dismas Zelenka’s “Hipocondrie” quintet) to classical (Joseph Haydn’s “Der Geburtstag,” aka “The Birthday)” to 20th century (selections by Bohuslav Martinu and Heitor Villa-Lobos). The series closes on June 26 with the Frank Lacy Sextet. Fronted by Kuumba Frank Lacy and featuring guest vocalist Liz Torres, the Sextet’s eclectic set list includes free form jazz, “updated arrangements of modern expression in jazz today,” and the world premiere of a composition by Lacy.

Seating at these free concerts is on a first come, first served basis. Tues., June 19 and 26, 8pm in Washington Square Park (Fifth Ave./Waverly Place, btw. W. Fourth & Macdougal Sts.). Rainspace: Judson Memorial Church (55 Washington Square South, at Thompson St.). For more information, visit washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org, call 212-252-3621, or email info@washingtonsquaremusicfestival.org.

The LES Citizens Parade, part of this year’s River to River Festival, happens June 22 and 24. | Photo courtesy of Namoi Goldberg Hass, Laura Nova

THE RIVER TO RIVER FESTIVAL | With a ticket price as free as the air you breathe — and a geographic breadth that allows audiences to experience some of the best dance, music, theater, and visual art Lower Manhattan has to offer — the 17th annual River to River Festival delivers 10 days of eye-opening (often genre-blurring) activities taking place at over 40 indoor and outdoor venues. Here are a few definite destinations that caught our eye, when we scanned the meaty menu presented by event producer LMCC (the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council).

On Thurs., June 21, 6–9pm, “Tribeca Art + Culture Night” delivers on its name by showcasing the neighborhood’s vibrant gallery district. Over 20 fine art and design galleries, university and institutional art galleries, nonprofit art institutions, and performance spaces will stay open well into the night — allowing you to stroll from place to place, experiencing a high volume of openings, talks, workshops, and performances. On Tues., June 19, “Night at the Museums” is a likeminded event, with free admission to Downtown cultural institutions and museums.

On Fri., June 22 at 5:30pm and Sat., June 24 at 4pm, The LES Citizens Parade (as in, Lower East Side) is an activist processional and a series of performances taking place in Seward Park (Broadway between Essex & Jefferson Sts.). Co-created by choreographer and Dances for a Variable Population artistic director Naomi Goldberg Haas and visual artist Laura Nova, the work, they assure us, “creates a celebratory, visual journey that honors the experience of long-term residents of the Lower East Side, examining the community through lenses of movement, performance, and visual art. Performers create literal and figurative routes through a neighborhood of disparate and intersecting traditions including Eastern, Western, and Latin American modalities of grace, balance, and beauty.”

Sun., June 17, 7pm in Rockefeller Park, “Naamah’s Ark” is an epic oratorio that looks at the Noah’s Ark story from the viewpoint of Noah’s wife. Mon., June 18 through Fri., June 22, “It’s Showtime NYC” finds one of the city’s largest street dance companies doing their thing on the steps of Federal Hall (all performances at 4pm). On Fri., June 15 and Sat., June 16 at 7pm (and again, 5pm on Sun., June 17), the Brookfield Place Winter Garden is the setting for choreographerCatherine Galasso’s “Of Granite and Glass,” a site-specific modern dance work that uses the venue’s marble staircase as “a dramatic backdrop for a performance evoking failed spring breaks, ecstatic dance rituals, and sacred StairMaster routines.”

The River to River Festival takes place June 15–24. All events are free. Visit rivertorivernyc.com. Facebook: facebook.com/LMCCNYC. Twitter: @LMCC. Instagram: @LMCC_NYC.

BY SCOTT STIFFLER

Part of River to River, June 21’s Tribeca Art + Culture Night showcases the neighborhood’s vibrant gallery district. | Photo courtesy of Tribeca Art + Culture Night

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