June 12th

Great Lawn, Central Park, Manhattan

The New York Philharmonic Concerts in Central Park, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, are a beloved summer tradition, offering free classical music performances to the public in one of the city’s most iconic settings. This series of concerts is part of the broader New York Philharmonic’s Concerts in the Parks, which have been bringing world-class music to the city’s parks since 1965. The Great Lawn, with its expansive green space and the Manhattan skyline as a backdrop, provides an idyllic venue for these events, attracting thousands of attendees each year. The atmosphere is festive, with concert-goers of all ages picnicking, lounging on blankets, and enjoying the communal experience of live music under the stars.

This year’s program features a rich and diverse repertoire, designed to appeal to both classical music aficionados and newcomers alike. The 2024 series opens with Leonard Bernstein’s lively and energetic “Overture to Candide,” a piece that reflects the Philharmonic’s deep connection to the legendary composer and former music director. Following this, the orchestra will perform Tchaikovsky’s “Symphony No. 5,” a work celebrated for its emotional depth and soaring melodies, conducted by the Philharmonic’s current music director, Jaap van Zweden. The symphony’s themes of fate and triumph resonate powerfully in the open-air setting, making it a highlight of the evening.

In addition to these cornerstone pieces, the program includes a selection of works by contemporary composers, underscoring the Philharmonic’s commitment to modern music. One such piece is by Jessie Montgomery, whose compositions blend classical elements with vernacular styles, creating a unique and compelling soundscape. Montgomery’s work, “Strum,” infuses the concert with vibrant rhythms and folk-like melodies, offering a fresh and dynamic listening experience. The inclusion of her work reflects the Philharmonic’s ongoing efforts to diversify its programming and highlight underrepresented voices in classical music.

Another notable feature of this year’s concerts is the collaboration with renowned soloists. Violinist Joshua Bell, a longtime favorite of the New York Philharmonic audiences, will perform Max Bruch’s “Violin Concerto No. 1,” a piece known for its lyrical beauty and technical demands. Bell’s virtuosity and emotive playing are sure to captivate the audience, adding an extra layer of excitement to the evening’s program.

The concerts also emphasize the importance of community and accessibility in the arts. The New York Philharmonic has made it a priority to reach a broad audience, and the Central Park concerts embody this mission by providing free access to high-quality performances. The setting in Central Park’s Great Lawn allows for a relaxed and informal concert experience, where the boundaries between the performers and the audience are softened by the shared enjoyment of music in a natural setting.

Overall, the New York Philharmonic Concerts in Central Park are a testament to the enduring power of music to bring people together. This year’s program, with its blend of classical masterpieces and contemporary works, promises to be a memorable and enriching experience for all who attend. Whether you’re a seasoned concert-goer or experiencing the Philharmonic for the first time, the concerts offer a unique opportunity to enjoy world-class music in one of New York City’s most beautiful outdoor spaces.

Westside entrances: West 81st or 86th Streets at Central Park West
Eastside entrances: East 79th or 85th Streets at Fifth Avenue

For weather and other updates, call the Concert Information Hotline at (212) 875-5709.

YAI will be operating an accessibility section for all Concerts in the Parks. Please call (212) 273-6181 or email ulli.fenninger@yai.org for details

All performances begin at 8:00 PM except the Free Indoor Concert in Staten Island, which begins at 4:00 PM.

 

Great Lawn

Things To Do

From The Philharmonic on the Great Lawn to Shakespeare in the Park to SummerStage, Central Park offers an endless array of things to do, see, hear – and, with two full service restaurants and several cafes, taste.  You can visit The Shakespeare Garden, take in a performance at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theater, take a ride on the Carousel – or just sit and people watch at Bethesda Terrace!

Contact Us

Contact Info

5th Ave. 
New York, NY, 10028

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