The Bayreuth Festival remains a place of traditions, but the stage that Richard Wagner built for his operas isn’t averse to innovation, either. While the festival is returning to in-person performances this year, parallel digital presentations will once again be accessible on Deutsche Grammophon’s DG Stage streaming platform. For people who can’t travel to Germany, or who are merely Wagner-curious, this is a boon.
The premiere stream of this year’s production of “The Flying Dutchman” costs just under 10 euros (about $12), and will remain available until Sunday at 6 p.m. Eastern time. The rest of the online festival — focused on productions from recent years — will be free.
If you want to see a staging that hasn’t been released on home video, register for the streams of the director Frank Castorf’s controversial (and fitfully insightful) Ring Cycle, filmed in 2016. Since Bayreuth doesn’t offer English subtitles, live or online, the recent Penguin Classics translation of Wagner’s epic poem will come in handy. There’s time to grab that before Castorf’s Route 66 ride through “Das Rheingold” (available for 48 hours starting on Friday at 10 a.m.).
SETH COLTER WALLS
Few things say summer in New York quite like live outdoor music — even if experiencing it means stewing in the sun. No matter the weather, count on the neo-soul singer Ari Lennox to radiate warmth on Saturday, when she performs in Brooklyn. Whether she’s singing about steamy hookups (cue up “On It,” her song with Jazmine Sullivan, and prepare to blush), the joys of being home alone (“New Apartment”), or running low on cash (“Broke”), Lennox’s songs make everyday life sound cozy and sensuous.
Lennox headlines the opening night of Celebrate Brooklyn!, BRIC’s annual series — now in its 43rd season — that presents live music at the Prospect Park Bandshell. She’ll receive support from the rapper and poet Kamauu and the R&B singers Adeline and Nesta. Admission to the concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 6), is free and available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Calling Young Readers
Summer isn’t just about beaches and barbecues. It’s also a season to celebrate books — not only for children, but by them as well.
Bibliophiles in preschool and Grades 1 to 3 will enjoy the Woke Baby Book Fair, which focuses on titles with social justice themes. On Saturday from 1 to 3:30 p.m., in and around Hearst Plaza at Lincoln Center, this free event offers readings by authors including Mahogany L. Browne, the center’s poet in residence and the festival’s curator. Expect book signings, games, baby movement classes and live banjo tunes.
Through Aug. 15, the Morgan Library & Museum is exhibiting 40 accordion-style volumes written by scribes from Grades 3 to 12. The show, “The Morgan Book Project,” springs from an annual program of the same name in which students draw inspiration from the library’s medieval and Renaissance illuminated manuscripts. Using traditional materials like gold leaf and organic pigments, the pupils illustrate their own tales.
This year’s selection features a magic portal that appears in Hoboken and a fairy tale king who identifies his long-lost daughter through a DNA test. You’ll also see a familiar villain: the coronavirus.
Shakespeare on Wheels
In recent years, the Public Theater’s Mobile Unit has brought theater to underserved communities, setting up Shakespearean shop in prisons, libraries, homeless shelters and community centers with a high-energy, low-footprint approach to the classics.
Following a pandemic-prompted hiatus, the program has returned with what it calls the Summer of Joy, bringing verse to outdoor plazas across the city. Produced by the Public and the National Black Theater, in partnership with the Department of Transportation, these free performances, which are currently scheduled to run through Aug. 29, come to Manhattan’s Astor Place on Saturday and Sunday at 4:30 p.m., with subsequent stops in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens. (For locations and dates, go to publictheater.org.)
Each show features the National Black Theater’s Stage for Healing and Resistance, Malik Work’s “Verses @ Work — The Abridged Mix” and “Shakespeare’s Call and Response,” conceived and directed by Patricia McGregor. The People’s Bus, a city initiative described as a community center on wheels, will pull up at each stop, too.
Today, dance lives as exciting a life online as it does onstage (in this time of Covid-19, perhaps more so). The 92nd Street Y recognized this development several years ago through the Mobile Dance Film Festival, which returns this weekend for its fourth edition. Three programs comprise 36 films made by artists from around the world, all shot on mobile devices.
These aren’t home videos, like those found on TikTok. They’re cinematic, immersive and inventively edited, ranging from 30 seconds to more than 10 minutes. Samples include Yupei Tang’s ominous, fragmented “Inception,” Maksym Kotskyi and Elena Mesheryakova’s brief but evocative “30 Seconds to Fastiv,” and the Nigerian dancer and choreographer Hermes Chibueze Iyele’s mesmerizing, golden-hued “Untold Stories.” An additional slate of student work rounds out the festival, which will host an in-person premiere of these programs on Saturday at Buttenwieser Hall; the films will also be available to view on demand through Aug. 15. Tickets for each program and for access to the stream start at $10 and can be purchased at 92y.org/mobiledancefilmfestival.