New York is the world's premier performing-arts city, and Lincoln Center is its premier institution. Whenever you're planning an evening's entertainment, check the offerings here, which can include opera, dance, symphonies, jazz, theater, film, and more -- from the classics to the contemporary. Lincoln Center's many buildings serve as permanent homes to their own companies as well as major stops for world-class performance troupes from around the globe.
Resident companies include the following: The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (tel. 212/875-5788; www.chambermusicsociety.org) performs at Alice Tully Hall or the Daniel and Joanna S. Rose Rehearsal Studio, often in the company of such high-caliber guests as Anne Sofie von Otter and Midori. The Film Society of Lincoln Center (tel. 212/875-5600 for automated schedule; tel. 212/875-5601 for box office; www.filmlinc.com) screens a daily schedule of movies at the Walter Reade Theater, and hosts notable film and video festivals, as well as the Reel to Real program for kids, pairing silent screen classics with live performance. Lincoln Center Theater (tel. 212/362-7600; www.lct.org) consists of the Vivian Beaumont Theater, a modern, comfortable venue with great sightlines that has been home to much good Broadway drama, and the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, a well-respected Off-Broadway house that has also boasted numerous theatrical triumphs. Past seasons have included excellent productions of Tom Stoppard's Arcadia, Carousel in revival, and the Tony Award-winning Light in the Piazza.
Most of the companies' major seasons run from about September or October to April, May, or June. Special series such as Great Performers and the new American Songbook, showcasing classic American show tunes, help round out the calendar. Indoor and outdoor events are held in warmer months: Summer kicks off with the JVC Jazz Festival in June; July sees Midsummer Night's Swing, with partner dancing, lessons, and music on the plaza; August's Mostly Mozart attracts such talents as Alicia de Larrocha and André Watts; Lincoln Center Festival celebrates the best of the performing arts; Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors is a series of free alfresco music and dance performances; there's also the New York International Film Festival, and more.
Tickets for performances at Avery Fisher and Alice Tully halls can be purchased through CenterCharge (tel. 212/721-6500) or online at www.lincolncenter.org (click on "Event Calendar"). Tickets for all Lincoln Center Theater performances can be purchased thorough Telecharge (tel. 212/239-6200; www.telecharge.com). Tickets for New York State Theater productions (New York City Opera and Ballet companies) are available through Ticketmaster (tel. 212/307-4100; www.ticketmaster.com), while tickets for films showing at the Walter Reade Theater can be bought up to 7 days in advance by calling tel. 212/496-3809.
Lincoln Center is also home to the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (tel. 212/870-1630; www.nypl.org/research/lpa/lpa.html), with collections, services, and other resources available for true theater buffs.
Offered daily, 1-hour guided tours of Lincoln Center tell the story of the great performing-arts complex, and even offer glimpses of rehearsals for $15 adults, $12 students and seniors, and $8 children. Call tel. 212/875-5350.
Lincoln Center 50th Anniversary Revamp -- The massive performing arts complex turned 50 in 2009, and celebrated its anniversary with a major renovation that added new performing spaces, a restaurant, visitor center, and overhauled open spaces within the "campus." Alice Tully Hall, one of the busiest halls in the city, reopened in early 2009 after an extensive, 18-month upgrade into a state-of-the-art dance, theater, and film space. The full Lincoln Center overhaul is scheduled for completion in 2010, including a redone Josie Robertson Plaza, which will have more seating, greenery, and a rebuilt Revson Fountain. It ties into the larger Lincoln Center Promenade, designed to seamlessly flow into the surrounding cityscape and the new "Street of the Arts" that is West 65th Street.
- © Frommer's 2013
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