The 2023 Harlem Meer Performance Festival will take place from 2:00 pm–4:00 pm every Sunday from July 16 to August 20.
Review our Q&A section below for more details.
HARLEM MEER PERFORMANCE FESTIVAL
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What are the 2023 Harlem Meer Performance Festival dates?
This year’s Festival will take place on six consecutive Sundays: July 16, July 23, July 30, August 6, August 13, and August 20.
What is the time commitment for each performance?
- 12:30 pm–1:00 pm: Arrival and set-up
- 1:00 pm–2:00 pm: Sound check and lunch
- 2:00 pm–2:50 pm: First set
- 2:50 pm–3:10 pm: Intermission
- 3:10 pm–4:00 pm: Second set
- 4:00 pm–4:30 pm: Breakdown
Can performers choose their performance date?
The Central Park Conservancy cannot guarantee a performance date at the time of application, but applicants can note dates they’re unavailable during the application process.
Should performers select a date they might be available to perform?
No. Applicants should only select the dates they can guarantee availability.
Where does the Harlem Meer Performance Festival take place?
The Festival takes place on the Charles A. Dana Discovery Center
plaza, inside Central Park at 110th Street (Central Park North) between Lenox Avenue and Fifth Avenue.
What are the closest subway stations?
Take the 2 or 3 train to the Central Park North–110th Street station (located at the corner of Central Park North and Lenox Avenue).
Is parking available?
Driving and parking in Central Park are prohibited. Limited free and metered street parking is available in the vicinity but finding a space can be challenging. Performers should plan to arrive much earlier than 12:30 pm to allow ample time to find parking if they plan to drive.
Who attends the Harlem Meer Performance Festival?
The Harlem Meer Performance Festival is a local event that caters primarily to communities residing in the neighborhoods bordering the north end of Central Park, including Harlem and East Harlem. However, all are welcome!
What ages does the Harlem Meer Performance Festival cater to?
The Festival is a family-friendly event open to visitors of all ages.
Does it cost anything to attend the Harlem Meer Performance Festival?
No, the Festival is free to attend.
Do visitors need to reserve tickets or pre-register to attend the Harlem Meer Performance Festival?
Tickets and pre-registration are not required to attend the festival.
When does the performer application for 2023 close?
Applications close at 11:59 pm ET on March 30.
When will performers be notified if they’ve been selected for the Harlem Meer Performance Festival?
Performers will be notified if they’ve been selected to perform at the 2023 Performance Festival no later than Monday, April 17.
What is the performer recruitment timeline?
- February 21–March 30: Performer applications open
- March 30 at 11:59 pm ET: Performer applications close
- April 1–April 16: Application review
- April 17: Performer selections notified
- May 1: Performer participation confirmation deadline, promotional materials (photos, biography, social media) due
- May 15:Contract and proof of liability insurance due
- June 1: Official Festival lineup publicly announced
- July 16–August 20: Harlem Meer Performance Festival
Do performers get paid to perform at the Harlem Meer Performance Festival?
Yes, each performance receives one $2,500 stipend, regardless of group size or number of performers. This stipend does not include liability insurance, which is required by NYC Parks in order to perform in Central Park.
Do performers need liability insurance to perform in Central Park?
Yes, NYC Parks Department requires all performers to purchase liability insurance.
Performers invited to participate in the Harlem Meer Performance Festival will receive guidance from the Central Park Conservancy on what kind of insurance is required and how to purchase it. Performers are responsible for the cost of their own insurance; this is not included in the performance stipend.
What does the audio set up look like?
The Central Park Conservancy will provide vocal monitors and a PA system, including audio speakers, microphones, and a sound board. We will also provide a professional sound engineer to install, run, and break down this equipment. The Conservancy does not provide backline support, piano or bass monitors, or a drum kit.
Do performers need to bring their own instruments?
Yes. The Central Park Conservancy does not provide instruments. Performers are solely responsible for the transport, setup, and breakdown of their own instruments in the performance space. Dollies can be provided for support if needed.
Is a greenroom provided?
The Central Park Conservancy provides a private green room with restroom access. For lunch, a light sandwich and water will be provided.
What is your cancellation policy?
The Harlem Meer Performance Festival takes place rain or shine. The Central Park Conservancy will only cancel performances in the event of severe weather conditions such as lightning or high winds. Cancellations are made by 10:00 am on the performance date.
I received notification that I’m on the standby list. What does this mean?
Unfortunately, the number of applications we receive to perform at the Harlem Meer Performance Festival far exceeds the number of performance slots that we offer. Performers on the standby list might be invited to participate in the event a performance date becomes available.
I applied to perform at the Harlem Meer Performance Festival but can no longer participate. How do I withdraw my application?