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Apr 25, 2019

Midsummer Night Swng 2019

Series Features 15 Nights of Social Dance with International Music Icons and Contemporary Rising Stars, including:

  • Rare New York performance by Brazilian icon and “Queen of Forró” Elba Ramalho
  • Trumpeter Bria Skonberg returns leading a new iteration of the Sisterhood of Swing, now with seven incredible musicians, including vocalist Catherine Russell
  • A night of DiscoVogue with Escort, East Village icon DJ Lina, and MikeQ x Qween Beat celebrating WorldPride NYC
  • Chulo Records’ Los Hacheros blend authentic salsa aesthetics with New York attitude
  • Classic salsa rhythms on the Fourth of July with renowned bandleader Bobby Valentín and his orchestra
  • New Orleans Jazz with five-time Grammy nominee Maria Muldaur performing the songs of Blue Lu Barker
  • A new leader in contemporary swing, the Eyal Vilner Big Band
  • Rising star Charles Turner & Uptown Swing, playing hard-swinging standards
  • Return of Silent Discos, Dance Contest, and LC Kids Dance!

Tickets on sale today

Today, Lincoln Center announced the 30th season of Midsummer Night Swing, celebrating the rich diversity of New York City with a wide range of sounds and dance styles from Tuesday, June 25, to Saturday, July 13, 2019. Fifteen nights of outdoor dance lessons and performances under the stars— covering genres like swing, rhythm & blues, ballroom, tango, salsa, and forró—bring to life the timeless magic of summer in the city.

“Over the past 30 years, Midsummer Night Swing has become a summer tradition for New Yorkers and visitors alike, bringing people from all walks of life together in Damrosch Park,” says Jill Sternheimer, Director of Public Programming for Lincoln Center. “New and seasoned dancers of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities are welcome to share the dance floor and experience the unique joy of social dance.”

The season kicks off in classic style on June 25 with veterans of the very first Midsummer Night Swing in 1989, Grammy-winning instrumentalist and bandleader Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks. Returning in a new, nimble iteration after an incredible debut performance last summer, the Sisterhood of Swing Seven—an ode to the International Sweethearts of Rhythm—takes the stage, led by dynamic trumpet player Bria Skonberg, and featuring the transcendent jazz vocalist Catherine Russell. The explosive Eyal Vilner Big Band celebrates its brand-new album due this summer with a multigenerational ensemble performing inventive arrangements of swing and jazz classics, plus original compositions.

Iconic and contemporary acts bring Latin rhythms to Damrosch Park, including a rare NYC performance by Brazilian superstar Elba Ramalho. Known as the “Queen of Forró,” Ramalho creates vivacious live performances with her unmistakable vocals and songwriting, giving her a permanent place in Brazilian music history. Ringing in the Fourth of July is the Puerto Rico–based Bobby Valentín Orchestra, led by one of the most prolific arrangers and instrumentalists in Latin music today. Chulo Records’ Los Hacheros will move die-hard salseros and younger generations to the dance floor, and Analía Goldberg, of the Argentinian orchestra Color Tango, leads her sextet in a night of golden-age tango.

Midsummer Night Swing’s DiscoVogue party joins the citywide celebration of WorldPride NYC on June 27, starring powerhouse nu disco darlings Escort, downtown staple DJ Lina playing classic house and club tracks, and innovators of the underground ballroom scene Mike Q x Qween Beat!. In July, disco beats return to Damrosch Park with fan favorites Joe McGinty & The Loser’s Lounge playing the biggest hits of the 1970s. Both events will be followed by late night Silent Disco.

Foxtrot, cha cha, and rumba steps will turn the dance floor into a ballroom when Joe Battaglia & The New York Big Band hit the stand. Blues and swing fans will be wowed by the up-and-coming Charles Turner & Uptown Swing, who are quickly making their mark on the NYC jazz scene. Motor city soul will be on full display when Dr. K’s Motown Revue interprets the best of classic Detroit hits. Five-time Grammy nominee Maria Muldaur digs into the catalogue of New Orleans jazz and blues, performing her Grammy-nominated interpretations of Blue Lu Barker hits.

Once again, the Harlem Renaissance Orchestra will close out the season on July 13 with the 15th-annual tribute to brilliant jazz soloist Illinois Jacquet, as dancers show off their best Lindy hop moves in hopes of winning the Ambassador Prize Dance Contest. Contestants can find the latest updates on registration details at MidsummerNightSwing.org.

LC Kids Dance with Dancing Classrooms is back for another year, teaching the basics of merengue, tango, salsa, and swing for ages 6 to 10, Saturday, July 13, from 3:00 to 4:30 pm.

“As the official hospital of Lincoln Center, NewYork-Presbyterian is proud to once again join in presenting this year’s Midsummer Night Swing,” said Dr. Steven J. Corwin, President and CEO, NewYork-Presbyterian. “We are pleased to support the health and wellness of all New Yorkers and celebrate diversity in the arts.”

Evenings at Midsummer Night Swing are ticketed events, on sale today. Admission includes a dance lesson for people of all skill levels, taught by some of New York’s foremost instructors. Through May 1, all ticket types can be purchased with no additional fees. Tickets start at $18. More information on individual tickets and season passes can be found below and at MidsummerNightSwing.org.

Live music begins at 7:30 pm and lasts until 10:00 pm, except on June 27 and July 2 when Silent Disco extends the party until 11:30 pm.

Midsummer Night Swing is one of several summer events offered by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts that annually activate the campus’s indoor and outdoor spaces. The Mostly Mozart Festival (July 10–August 10) brings extraordinary international artists, acclaimed stage productions, and concert performances to New York City. Lincoln Center Out of Doors (July 24–August 11), presents a wide array of free performances, including music, dance, spoken word, film, and more, reflecting the diversity of New York City. The David Rubenstein Atrium’s robust calendar of free events, including world-class performances, illuminating conversations, dance parties, kids’ programs, and more, also continues through the summer.

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Midsummer Night Swing 2019 Schedule
Tuesday, June 25 – Saturday, July 13


Thursday, May 23
7:30 pm - FREE

Panel Discussion: The Pivotal Role of Al Minns in Modern Day Lindy Hop

Moderated by Zita Allen
Panelists: Sandra Cameron, Paul Grecki, Denise Harris, Larry Schulz, and Lennart Westerlund
Film Society's Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center's Amphitheater, 144 West 65th
Presented in association with Swedes in NYC

Thursday, June 6
7:30 pm - FREE

Talk: Urban Stomp: The Artistic and Cultural Connections between Swing, Mambo, and Salsa

Derrick León Washington, PhD
Film Society's Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center's Amphitheater, 144 West 65th

Tuesday, June 25

Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks - Swing

Grammy-winning multi-instrumentalist and bandleader Vince Giordano and his Nighthawks have been attracting flocks of swing lovers to their weekly club dates for years, but their music has also been featured recently in hit shows The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and Boardwalk Empire. Veterans of the very first Midsummer Night Swing, these hot jazz ambassadors kick off the 2019 festival with an evening of classic ‘20s and ‘30s standards.

Dance Instructor: Heather Gehring and Lou Brockman teach Silver Screen Foxtrot
DJ: DJ Zuckerpunch

Wednesday, June 26

To Be Announced - Cuban Salsa

Trust us! You won’t want to miss this evening of classic Cuban salsa. Save the date and visit MidsummerNightSwing.org on June 3 for the latest updates.

Dance Instructor: Carlos Mateu teaches Timba
DJ: Ron McGugins

Thursday, June 27

DiscoVogue starring Escort, DJ Lina, MikeQ x Qween Beat! - Disco, Pop

You better work! Show your pride at DiscoVogue—part of Celebrating WorldPride NYC, the monthlong, citywide commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. This pre-parade party will feature an extended live set by Escort as well as house and club tracks provided by East Village icon DJ Lina and underground sensation MikeQ and members of the Qween Beat collective. Fronted by Adeline Michèle’s soulful vocals, Escort brings its “seamless blending of deep house beats and disco glitter” (NPR) to the dance floor for an evening of feel-good, nu disco bliss.

This show will have one extended live set.
Dance Instructor: Darrell Martin teaches Voguing
DJ: DJ Lina
Presented in association with Peace Bisquit
Pride support is provided by Bank of America, The Calamus Foundation, Jeffrey Gates and Mike Moran, Liza Parker and Frank Migliorelli, David Dechman and Michel Mercure.

After hours: Silent Disco powered by Quiet Events
At 10:00, when the sound system turns off, the dance party keeps going—DJs Valissa Yoe, William Francis, and Justin Dawson broadcast directly to your headphones until 11:30. Wireless headset is free with your ticket; $5 at the door for Silent Disco only.

Friday, June 28

Dr. K’s Motown Revue – Soul, Rhythm & Blues
featuring Kashyap Jani and Friends

Dr. K’s Motown Revue captures every backbeat, tambourine shake, and poetic vocal of the Detroit sound that has shaped popular American music for the past six decades. This spot-on, 11-piece band will take you on a musical journey to Hitsville, U.S.A., for an evening of timeless songs by the Temptations, the Four Tops, the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, Martha and the Vandellas, and more. DJ Marlon “International” Mills will kick things off with some of today’s best songs for West Coast Swing.

Dance Instructors: Joe Palmer teaches West Coast Swing
DJ: Marlon “International” Mills

Saturday, June 29

Los Hacheros – Salsa

Recently signed to Daptone’s Latin revival label, Chulo Records, New York City’s very own Los Hacheros keep the “deep groove of Afro-Caribbean music” (NPR) at the heart of their authentic salsa sound. The seven-piece band brings a swinging aesthetic to son montuno, guaracha, and salsa, recalling the greats of the golden era of Latin music, all the while playing to a “full, hot and sweaty dance floor” (NPR).

Dance Instructor: Jimmy Anton teaches Salsa
DJ: DJ Mar Y Sol

Tuesday, July 2

Joe McGinty & The Loser's Lounge - Disco

Crowd favorites Joe McGinty & The Loser’s Lounge—deemed part of “essential New York” by Time Out—make their annual return to Damrosch Park to celebrate the golden era of disco. Put down your phone, grab a subway token, and hustle the night away like it’s 1979. Dance Instructor: Alessandra Marconi teaches Hustle DJ: Bill Coleman

After hours: Silent Disco powered by Quiet Events
At 10:00, when the sound system turns off, the dance party keeps going as DJ Bill Coleman, Rita Houston of WFUV, and DJ Rimarkable broadcast directly to your headphones until 11:30. Wireless headset is free with your ticket; $5 at the door for Silent Disco only.

Wednesday, July 3

Sisterhood of Swing Seven – Swing

led by Bria Skonberg
featuring Catherine Russell
with Camille Thurman, saxophone; Emily Asher, trombone; Endea Owens, bass; Shirazette Tinnin, drums; Champian Fulton, piano; and Molly Ryan guitar

Following the wildly successful Midsummer Night Swing kick-off last summer, trailblazing trumpet player and bandleader Bria Skonberg returns to Damrosch Park with yet another all-star project. This year’s combination of talented and swinging musicians promises to deliver an unforgettable evening of 1930s–‘40s style classic swing.

Dance Instructors: Shana Maria Weaver teaches Lindy Hop
DJ: Heather Flock

Thursday, July 4

Bobby Valentín Orchestra – Salsa

A true Fania all-star, the multi-instrumentalist bandleader and arranger Bobby Valentín is one of the most respected musicians on the Latin music scene, having collaborated from a young age with artists such as Celia Cruz, Tito Rodriguez, Ray Barretto, Charlie Palmieri, and more. Celebrate the true spirit of American independence at an evening of classic salsa with the “Rey del Bajo” (“King of the Bass”) and his orchestra.

Dance Instructor: Carlos Konig teaches Salsa
DJ: DJ Broadway

Friday, July 5

Joe Battaglia & The New York Big Band – Ballroom

For more than 20 years, trumpet player Joe Battaglia and his sixteen-piece big band have been playing fresh arrangements of everyone’s favorite rumba, foxtrot, cha cha, and other ballroom styles. Well known by dance lovers around town for his longstanding gigs at Tavern on the Green, the Rainbow Room, and the Edison Ballroom, this native New Yorker and his New York Big Band know how to keep dancers gliding around the floor with a melodic sensibility that “showcases Battaglia’s lyrical and sweet sounding horn” (Cabaret Scenes).

Dance Instructor: Sandra Cameron teaches Foxtrot, Swing, and Rumba
DJ: Gene Eagle

Saturday, July 6

Charles Turner & Uptown Swing – Swing, Jazz, Blues

Young jazz vocalist and bandleader Charles Turner III—winner of the first-annual Duke Ellington Vocal Competition, among other accolades—has quickly made his mark in the New York City jazz scene, playing regularly at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s late night dance sessions, Ginny’s Supper Club, Smoke, and more. Turner slides effortlessly from crooning jazz melodies to hard-swinging standards to down-and-out blues, all backed by a flawless five-piece rhythm and horn section. There’s no time like the present to hear from the new generation of swing ambassadors.

Dance Instructors: LaTasha Barnes and Joshua Mclean teach Lindy Hop
DJ: Odysseus Bailer
Special performance by HellaBlackLindyHop

Tuesday, July 9

Elba Ramalho – Forró

Known by many as “The Queen of Forró,” the Brazilian songwriter, singer, poet, and actress Elba Ramalho has been featured on more than three dozen albums since her first solo record, Ave de Prata, took Brazil by storm in 1979. Don’t miss this rare New York appearance by the powerful, multifaceted interpreter of traditional Brazilian styles. With a driving rhythm section made up of triangle, guitar, and accordion, forró is festive music before anything else, and there is no better party hostess than the “dizzying force of nature,” Elba Ramalho (AllMusic.com).

Dance Instructors: Marizete Browne teaches Forró
DJ: Greg Caz
Presented in association with the NY Forró Fest

Wednesday, July 10

Eyal Vilner Big Band – Big Band Swing
featuring Brianna Thomas and Brandon Bain

Led by saxophonist, composer, and conductor Eyal Vilner, this 16-piece, multigenerational ensemble has been called “an exciting new sound in the finest tradition of contemporary big band music” (All About Jazz). As a group these international players have collaborated with jazz legends such as Jimmy Heath, Jimmy Owens, and Frank Wess, as well as the new generation of greats. Join them under the stars for this evening of big band swing standards as they celebrate the release of their new album.

Dance Instructors: Sam Coleman teaches Lindy Hop and Authentic Jazz
DJ: DJ Ron

Thursday, July 11

Analía Goldberg’s Sextet – Tango

Having toured the world as part of Argentina’s renowned Color Tango Orchestra, pianist, composer, and arranger Analía Goldberg leads her own acclaimed sexteto típico for an evening of golden-age tango. Experience the dramatic intensity of a milonga under the moonlight with a classic six-piece configuration that artfully balances the traditional with the new.

Dance Instructor: Leonardo Sardella and Mariana Parma teach Tango
DJ: María José Sosa
FREE Adaptive lesson from 5:30 to 6:00 pm by Dance for PD®

Friday, July 12

Maria Muldaur sings the songs of Blue Lu Barker and more – New Orleans Jazz, Rhythm & Blues

With deep roots in folk, rock, and pop, Maria Muldaur has been touring worldwide for more than fifty years. These days she’s digging into the catalogue of New Orleans jazz and blues singer Blue Lu Barker, whose 1930s and ‘40s hits include “Don’t You Feel My Leg” and “Look What Baby’s Got for You.” There is no better pairing than a sultry summer night and some down and dirty New Orleans rhythm and blues.

Dance Instructor: Virginia Jimenez teaches Blues
DJ: Todd-O-Phonic Todd
Special performance by the Brooklyn Bombshells

Saturday, July 13

LC Kids Dance! with Dancing Classrooms – FREE
3:00–4:30 pm

For more than two decades, the folks at Dancing Classrooms have been spreading the joy of social dance to thousands of kids in New York City schools. Join us for this beloved (and free!) annual all-ages dance lesson where kids can learn the basics of merengue, tango, salsa, and swing before taking a spin on the dance floor.

Dance Instructor: Alee Reed
Recommended for ages 6–10

Saturday, July 13

Harlem Renaissance Orchestra – Big Band Swing
15th Annual Tribute to Illinois Jacquet

Swing is the thing at our season finale. The Harlem Renaissance Orchestra keeps the spirit of jazz legend Illinois Jacquet alive with classic big-band tunes and blazing uptown energy. Always one of the best parties of the season, the night reaches its glorious peak when New York’s best dancers compete for the Ambassador Prize, an homage to Lindy hop icon Frankie Manning.

Dance Instructor: Margaret Batiuchok teaches Swing
DJ: Ryan Swift

Ambassador Prize Lindy Hop Dance Contest

To enter the contest, sign up at MidsummerNightSwing.org or in person at the entry gate. Both partners must be registered and checked in by 8:00 pm on July 13.

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All tickets and pass types go on sale today, April 25, at MidsummerNightSwing.org. Passes can be purchased with no fees until May 1, in person and online. Multi-evening Midsummer Night Swing passes are priced at $60 for four dances, $84 for six dances, and $170 for the full season. Tickets for individual evening events are $18 prior to the day of the event and $22 day-of.

Ambassador Package: For $105, a group of four will receive admission to the dance floor, free bag check for four, and one complimentary glass of wine or beer per guest.

The Swing box office is located in the lobby of David Geffen Hall at Broadway and 65th Street. Tickets for individual events and passes can be purchased in advance at the David Geffen Hall Box Office or beginning at 5:30 pm on the night of the event at a box office in Damrosch Park. All major credit cards will be accepted. Tickets and passes can also be purchased through CenterCharge, 212.721.6500, or MidsummerNightSwing.org.

Rain Policy: Midsummer Night Swing makes every effort to present each event of the season, as long as weather allows. Performance cancellations due to inclement weather will not be announced until 8:30 pm on show night. In the case of cancellation, ticketholders are entitled to exchange for another performance or a refund. Passholders are not entitled to a refund. If a performance has begun and is canceled after 8:30 pm, exchanges or refunds are not offered.

Silent Discos: Silent Discos, powered by Quiet Events, return to the festival on June 27 and July 2. At the Silent Discos, dancers wear wireless headphones to listen and dance to extended DJ sets after the live music ends at 10:00 pm. On June 27, Justin Dawson, William Francis, and Valissa Yoe will each spin sets; Bill Coleman, WFUV’s Rita Houston, and Rimarkable will do a Silent Disco takeover on July 2. Silent Discos will continue until 11:30 pm. Wireless headsets are free with the purchase of a live show ticket or $5 at the door for the Silent Disco only, subject to capacity.

About The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (LCPA) serves three primary roles: presenter of artistic programming, national leader in arts and education and community engagement, and manager of the Lincoln Center campus. A presenter of thousands of free and ticketed events, performances, tours, and educational activities annually, LCPA offers a variety of festivals and programs, including American Songbook, Avery Fisher Career Grants and Artist program, David Rubenstein Atrium programming, Great Performers, Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Awards, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, Lincoln Center Vera List Art Project, LC Kids, Midsummer Night Swing, Mostly Mozart Festival, White Light Festival, the Emmy Award–winning Live From Lincoln Center, which airs nationally on PBS, and Lincoln Center Education, which is celebrating more than four decades enriching the lives of students, educators, and lifelong learners. As manager of the Lincoln Center campus, LCPA provides support and services for the Lincoln Center complex and the 11 resident organizations: The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Film Society of Lincoln Center, Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Juilliard School, Lincoln Center Theater, The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, New York Philharmonic, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, School of American Ballet, and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.

Lincoln Center is committed to providing and improving accessibility for people with disabilities. For information, contact Accessibility at Lincoln Center at access@lincolncenter.org or 212.875.5375.

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  • Midsummer Night Swing is presented by NewYork-Presbyterian
  • Additional support is provided by The Shubert Foundation, The Katzenberger Foundation, Inc., Great Performers Circle, Lincoln Center Spotlight, Chairman’s Council, and Friends of Lincoln Center.
  • Additional support is made possible by our NextGen supporters: Katherine Farley and Jerry Speyer, Hearst, Mr. and Mrs. John B. Hess, Elliot and Roslyn Jaffe, Stephen M. Ross, James Dinan and Elizabeth Miller, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz, Sandra and Tony Tamer, Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund, Cheryl and Blair Effron, Meg and Bennett Goodman, Cheryl and Philip Milstein and Hon. Stephen C. Robinson.
  • Public support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Tom Finkelpearl, Commissioner, New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
  • Operation of Lincoln Center’s public plazas is supported in part with public funds provided by the City of New York. NewYork-Presbyterian is the Official Hospital of Lincoln Center.
  • Summer at Lincoln Center” is supported by PEPSICO. Artist catering provided by Zabar’s and Zabars.com.

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Additional information, as well as photos and videos of the artists can be found at Lincoln Center’s Press Room: http://AboutLincolnCenter.org/Press-Room. Login or register to access.

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Media Contact:

Desiree Naranjo     212-875-55078     dnaranjo@lincolncenter.org