To celebrate its 150th anniversary, the 92nd Street Y (now known as 92NY after last year’s rebranding) is launching a new annual music festival called Midsummer MusicFest, which is set to kick off on Tuesday, July 11.
The week-long event will illuminate jazz’s influence on other art forms for its inaugural year, then segue right into the Upper East Side institution’s long-running Jazz in July festival on July 18.
Tony, Emmy, and Grammy nominee Norm Lewis will be opening Midsummer MusicFest. The former Phantom of the Opera performer will highlight the influence of jazz through the Great American Songbook (a collection of the most popular and enduring songs from the early to mid-20th century). The program will span jazz, Broadway, standards and blues with Lewis showcasing his unique versatility.
Next up on July 13, the Harkness Dance Center will present a collaborative performance with tap and swing dance sensation Caleb Teicher, joined by talented jazz and bebop singer Veronica Swift. After the show, a swing dance party will be led by Teicher and Charles Turner & Uptown Swing. Closing the festival will be pianist-composer Vijay Iver linking up with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra on Sunday, July 16.
Opening the Jazz in July festival, curated by Bill Charlap, is three-time Grammy award-winning singer Dee Dee Bridgewater, joining Grammy-winning trumpeter Nicolas Payton and the Bill Charlap Trio (also Grammy winners) on Tuesday, July 18. Bridgwater, who also has a Tony award under her belt, will perform a spontaneous storytelling affair that will make this show a real one-of-a-kind.
Guitar legend John Scofield will be joined by piano virtuoso Aaron Diehl on Tuesday, July 25. July 26 will be a historic night with Bill Charlap performing the first solo piano concert ever in Buttenwieser Hall. Topping it all off will be a jazz party melee on July 27 with all-star performers John Pizzarelli (guitar), Renee Rosnes (pianist), Ken Peplowski (clarinet/tenor sax) and more sharing the stage for the final night blowout.
For more information on both festivals, click here. Online and in-person tickets for both festivals are available here.