Starting tomorrow, Copley Square will be transformed into a showcase for music, dance, and family entertainment with the return of Boston Summer Arts Weekend, the annual arts celebration sponsored by Boston public television station WGBH, the Boston Globe, and Citizen’s Bank.
This free outdoor festival will feature a total of 18 performances over the course of two days, offering an eclectic mix of talent that includes ringmaster clown The Remarkable Renaldo, the legendary Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and award-winning Cape Breton fiddler Natalie MacMaster. Find a full schedule of events here.
Family-oriented music and dance events will take place mostly on Saturday, starting with a performance by the nationally acclaimed children’s band Karen K & the Jitterbugs at 11 a.m., and Grammy-nominee Zak Morgan and his band the Funny Farmers at 1:30 p.m. That evening, things heat up when Greater Boston’s most gifted drummers take the stage during the second annual Blue Man Group Boston Drum-Off at 6 p.m., followed by a concert featuring Grammy Award–winning singer-songwriters Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell at 9:45 p.m.
On Sunday at 12:30 p.m., one of Boston’s leading performing arts organizations, the Handel + Haydn Society, will perform Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 (“Ode to Joy”) as part of its bicentennial celebration. Founded in 1815, Handel + Hayden is America’s oldest continuously performing arts organization. Grammy-winning R&B artist Aaron Neville will bring the Summer Arts weekend to a close with a performance starting at 4:45 p.m.
In addition to all these events, the festivities will include Irish step dancing, a capella singing, Indian folk music, and ballroom dancing as well as food vendors (cash only). You can bring your own food, but alcohol is prohibited. Small blankets, beach towels, and low-to-the-ground beach chairs are permitted. Space on the grass is on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The Boston Summer Arts Weekend takes place in Copley Square, 560 Boylston St., Boston, on Saturday, July 25, starting at 11 a.m. and Sunday, July 26, starting at 12:30 p.m. Find a full schedule of performances here. The event is free and open to the public and will take place rain or shine in Copley Square with one noticeable exception: in the event of rain, the Handel + Hayden Society’s performance, scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 26, will relocate to the Church of the Covenant, 67 Newbury St. To learn more about rain delays, visit the Summer Arts Weekend’s Twitter page. Via public transportation, take any MBTA Green Line trolley to Copley or an Orange Line train to Back Bay Station.
Michelle Marino can be reached at email@example.com.