Make Music New York is throwing a summer solstice, post-pandemic party and you’re all invited!
Make Music New York – “a unique festival of free concerts in public spaces throughout the five boroughs of New York City” – is teaming up with event host Friends of the East River Esplanade to bring New Yorkers of all ages a few hours of free live music, activities and refreshments.
“I can’t wait to see the performances,” said Stacy Papas, Executive Director of Friends of the East River Esplanade. “[The event] is in a beautiful spot. I’m really excited to hear live music for the first time in a long, long time.”
Papas has put together quite a fun lineup for anyone who can make it over to the Alice Aycock Pavilion (East 60th) starting at 3pm on Monday, June 21.
“Each [musical] performance was handpicked and is perfect for the space,” Papas said. “They’re all unique and interesting. The refreshments and activities are provided by local businesses. And the whole occasion is family friendly.”
Guitarist and composer Liz Hogg kicks off the party with an hour-long set of solo classical guitar. The Brooklynite explained that her life as a musician during the pandemic was “not as doomsday as it felt it could be” because she was able to play for audiences through a number of livestreams. But Hogg agrees that there’s nothing like live music in person, and is happy to see life for New York City musicians returning to normal. “I’ve had a few performances [since the COVID-19 restrictions were eased]. I wish I could stick around for the whole event but I have another performance booked after.” (Here’s her performance calendar).
Like Hogg, bluegrass collective Tomtown Ramblers is thrilled to be playing for live audiences again. “You would not believe how pumped we are,” exclaimed band leader Tom Adams. “It’s been brutal, really sad. We [the band] have not seen each other for about 14 to 15 months.” When the Tomtown Ramblers take the stage from 5-6pm, Adams promises a lot of bluegrass with a mix of covers and band originals. (Here’s their performance calendar).
While enjoying the local music, two local favorites will be offering some treats and crafts. La Newyorkina is giving away its famous paletitas and The Craft Studio will be set up for a kids-only, make-your-own wooden musical instrument session. Both the paletitas and the instruments will be available while supplies last.
The evening closes out with world music and dance group Sound Bridges and Percussive Dance from 6:30 to 7:30pm. “The whole event is a way to come together after a long year and a half,” Papas said, adding that “all of our donors really make everything happen.”