The third-annual Summer Arts Weekend will take place on July 26-27, 2014 in Copley Square. Copley Square is the bustling heart of Boston's Back Bay District, with the central grassy area becoming a concert venue, and the fountain area near Boylston Street hosting a 2nd stage. Summer Arts Weekend is generously sponsored by Citizens Bank, WGBH, and The Boston Globe. For several days, arts-related events take place in the Copley Square area, culminating in FREE live concerts and artistic performances on Saturday and Sunday. Among the music headliners for 2014 are Bluegrass legend Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder and Tex-Mex R&B band Los Lobos.
The first major event is akin to a street festival on Newbury Street, known as the Summer Arts Walk. On Wednesday July 23, there will be complimentary refreshments, appetizers, art demonstrations, and live music from 5 to 8 pm. The Summer Arts Walk is sponsored by 12 art galleries along Newbury, Arlington, and Stuart Streets: Axelle Fine Arts, Beth Urdang Gallery, Childs Gallery, Circle Furniture, Copley Society of Art, Galerie d'Orsay, International Poster Gallery, L'Attitude Art & Sculpture Gallery, Landry & Arcari Rugs and Carpeting, Martha Richardson Fine Art, Quidley & Company Fine Art, Robert Klein Gallery, The Guild of Boston Artists, and The Society of Arts & Crafts.
The huge festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday. The Summer Arts Weekend strives to feature a "dynamic variety of musical artists from across the classical, jazz, blues, folk, and Americana...as well as a number of new arts, food and cultural programs." The main stage is set up in front of Trinity Church. Concert goers bring blankets and low-to-the ground beach chairs and enjoy the music from the lawn in the park. The concerts are FREE to attend, and run much of the day during the weekend. A second smaller stage is set up near the fountain, with performances geared toward family and children.
Public facilities and emergency services are provided for at the event. There will be select food vendors in Copley Square, as well as a handicapped person viewing area, port-a-potties, and lost-and-found. Travel and arts-related vendor booths will surround the square, adding a tradeshow like atmosphere to the festival. It is recommended to take the T subway to Copley Square instead of driving due to normal traffic congestion, and to arrive early. Water, a hat, and sun block is a must-bring if the weather will be hot and sunny. Always remember that alcohol is strictly forbidden, and could lead to one being arrested.
Visitors can take in the sights while attending Summer Arts Weekend. Copley Square is home to the magnificent Boston Public Library McKim building, Trinity Church, Copley Place, New Old South Church, and the glass-clad Hancock Tower. Prudential Center and Newbury Street are only a short distance away.
Summer Arts Weekend is growing in popularity. Lawn capacity is very limited to the inner portion of Copley Square, and entry is on a first-come, first-served basis, rain or shine. Concert visitors are asked to conserve space on the lawn to allow more people to attend. Summer Arts Weekend is another great FREE concert in Boston, generously sponsored by Citizens Bank, WGBH, The Boston Globe, and many others.
Main Stage Performers
11:00 am to 10:45 pm
11:00 am — SteveSongs (Children's Music)
12:15 pm — The Gizmo Guys (Family Entertainment)
01:30 pm — Debbie and Friends (Family Music)
03:00 pm — Emperor Norton's Stationary Marching Band (Circus Band)
04:00 pm — Shun Ng (Funk, Blues, Jazz Guitar)
05:00 pm — The StepCrew (Irish Step Dancers)
07:00 pm — Jesse Cook (Flameno, Rumba, Jazz Music)
08:15 pm — The Soul Rebels (Horns & Drums, Club Style)
09:45 pm — Los Lobos (Tex-Mex, R&B, Soul Music)
Fountain Stage Performers
12:00 pm to 9:00 pm
12:00 pm — ACROfitness Performing Team (Kid's Acrobatics Team)
01:15 pm — ZUMIX featuring the Coelho Trio (Family Music & Entertainment)
02:30 pm — Harney Academy of Irish Dance (Irish Music & Dance)
03:45 pm — Lil Phunk (Kid's Hip-Hop Dance Team)
06:00 pm — Blue Man Group Boston Drum Off (Super Unique Percussion)
07:55 pm — Happy Valley Guitar Orchestra (Eclectic Guitar Ensemble)
Main Stage Performers
12:15 pm to 5:45 pm
12:15 pm — The Boston Conservatory Broadway Revue (Dancers)
01:30 pm — Women of the World (International Female Ensemble)
02:00 pm — Landmarks Orchestra featuring Violinist Anne Akiko Meyers
03:15 pm — Arturo Sandoval (Trumpet & Fugel Horn Jazz)
04:45 pm — Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder (Bluegrass)
Fountain Stage Performers
1:15 pm to 5:00 pm
01:15 pm — Boston Bhangra (Indian Punjab Dancers)
02:45 pm — Shun Ng (Funk, Blues, Jazz Guitar)
04:15 pm — Street Magic Acappella (North End Acappella Group)
Boston Summer Arts Weekend (Copley Square Venue)
Copley Square, Boylston & Dartmouth Streets, Boston, MA 02116
Nearest MBTA: Copley Station (Green Line)