From opera to disco, 1980s pop and even a popular Broadway musical, you can enjoy evenings of awesome entertainment for absolutely free at parks across Queens all summer long.
Throughout July and August, the New York City Parks Department has a number of free performances scheduled at parks throughout the “World’s Borough.”
The lineup includes the 2018 Waterfront Concert Series at Astoria Park, sponsored by the Central Astoria Local Development Corporation, scheduled for five consecutive Thursdays beginning on July 12. The series kicks off that date with “Dancin’ Machine” performing classic songs from the disco era.
The Waterfront Concert Series also includes a doowop concert featuring “The Devotions” on July 19; the “Motor City Revue” Motown concert on July 26; a rock and roll concert featuring “Bargain,” a The Who tribute band on Aug. 2; and jazz and swing music featuring “Fleur Seule” on Aug. 9.
Each performance takes place from 7 to 9 p.m. on the Great Lawn at Astoria Park, located on Shore Boulevard between the Hell Gate Bridge and the Astoria Pool. Visit centralastoria.org or call 718-728-7820 for more information.
Other concerts scheduled to take place at Queens parks this summer include the following:
- The Metropolitan Opera will return to Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City this Friday, June 29, for its Summer Recital Series. Three Met performers will entertain the crowd with arias and duets from many classical operas. The concert runs from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Socrates Sculpture Park, Vernon Boulevard and Broadway.
- If you’re heading out for a day at Rockaway Beach on Friday, July 6, stick around to dance the night away with the City Stompers at a square dance off the boardwalk. The hoedown takes place from 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Beach 94th Street off Shore Front Parkway in Rockaway Beach.
- Feel the drums beat at Alley Pond Park on Tuesday, July 10, as the Japanese drummers from Takoza take the stage. The energetic group from Japan will break out the big drums (Taiko) and showcase a rich tradition of music that will entertain the eyes and ears alike. The show takes place from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the park located off the corner of 76th Avenue and Springfield Boulevard.
- Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City will host another exciting evening of music on Thursday, July 12, when it showcases jazz saxophonist Eric Wyatt. The performance is presented in partnership with the Jazz Foundation of America. The concert takes place from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
- If you can’t make it to Broadway for a night of theater, head over to the Seuffert Bandshell in Forest Park on Thursday, July 12, as Plaza Theatrical Productions presents their production of “Sister Act.” It’s based on the popular 1992 movie starring Whoopi Goldberg as a singer in witness protection disguised as a nun in a convent. The curtain rises at 7:30 p.m. at the Seuffert Bandshell, located off the corner of Woodhaven Boulevard and Forest Park Drive. Sterling National Bank and the Forest Park Trust sponsor the performance.
- Get a “Ticket to Ride” over to Cunningham Park on Thursday, July 12, for a performance featuring “BritishMania,” a Beatles tribute band. They’ll perform some of the Fab Four’s greatest hits, and afterward, you can even take photos with the band members. The show takes place from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Cunningham Park, located off the corner of 196th Street and Union Turnpike. (In the event of rain, the concert will take place on July 19).
- Rock out at the Seuffert Bandshell in Forest Park on Sunday afternoon, July 15, as The Lunatix perform classic rock songs. The show takes place from 2 to 3:30 p.m. and is presented by the Forest Park Trust.
- If you love 1980s music, well, you’ll want to head out the Seuffert Bandshell on Thursday night, July 19, as The Ronald Reagans perform classic songs from the beloved decade. Rock out with Ronnie from 7:30 to 9 p.m. at this concert sponsored by Councilman Robert Holden.
- Come back to the Seuffert Bandshell on Sunday afternoon, July 22, for a performance by Plastic Soul, which will feature rock favorites from the 1960s and 1970s. The show runs from 2 to 3:30 p.m.
- The following week, Sunday, July 29, the Bill Gati Duo will visit the Seuffert Bandshell and perform show tunes from Broadway classics including Les Miserables, The Phantom of the Opera and Fiddler on the Roof. Enjoy the show from 2 to 3:30 p.m. that day.
- Head over to the Queens Botanical Garden on Sunday afternoon, Aug. 12, for a “Music in the Garden” performance featuring Women’s Raga Massive. Using classical Indian music, they’ll perform a series of improvised pieces and raga-inspired tributes to female heroes. Admission to this concert is free with Garden admission. The show takes place from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St., Flushing.
- Finally, Seuffert Bandshell will host a Four Tops revue show featuring former lead singer Theo Peoples on Thursday night, Aug. 16, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Enjoy some of the legendary sounds of the Motown group and other chart-toppers.
Each of the concerts are considered weather-permitting; check with the Parks Department website prior to performances in the event of inclement weather.