Events to check out this weekend, August 9 to 12.
1. Stan a Colombian diva.
Those genre-hopping hips don’t lie, and you can catch them — attached to the Colombian pop giant Shakira — in Madison Square Garden for the first time in eight years this Friday. The tour, which was postponed from January due to a vocal-cord injury, is in support of the album El Dorado, which won this year’s Grammy for Best Latin Pop Album.
2. Find some vintage book treasures.
Head to the Metrograph Book Fair this weekend, where alongside a film program including Billy Wilder’s gothic Sunset Boulevard and Warren Beatty’s Reds cinephiles can sift through thousands of rare and collectible scripts, monographs, novelizations, biographies, periodicals like Sight & Sound, and other memorabilia. Who knows what you’ll find.
3. Believe in magic.
The autobiographical show In & Of Itself by illusionist Derek DelGaudio is much more than just a magic show, it’s a thoughtful exploration of identity. It’s also very fun. Catch the Frank Oz–directed, Neil Patrick Harris–produced shebang before it closes on August 19. At the very least, it will leave you wondering, “How did he do that?”
4. Cheer for some dragons.
Dragon boats, that is. This Saturday and Sunday is the free Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in Flushing Meadows Park, where over 200 teams compete for prizes and celebrate tradition. There’ll be a parade and stages featuring traditional Chinese arts, martial-arts demonstrations, the traditional Dragon dance, and other performances and demonstrations of folk arts and crafts, plus an international food court.
5. Sample the sweetness of summer.
Even if you’re not a fan of the sweet stuff, Honey Weekend this Saturday and Sunday at Wave Hill in the Bronx has something for you. Make a candle, check out extraction demos, learn about beekeeping and even dress up like a bee if you’re so inclined (make sure you have some kids with you for that one). Of course, there will be tastings, too.
6. Celebrate free music.
The BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! season is winding down, but it still has a weekend hat trick up its sleeve. Tonight, pack a picnic for blues ambassador and guitar virtuoso Gary Clark Jr., with Fiona Silver. Come back on Friday for Montreal experimental collective Godspeed You! Black Emperor with Emel Mathlouthi, and on Saturday cannonball in for legends the Breeders, who this year released a new album, All Nerve, with their iconic Last Splash lineup. Speedy Ortiz opens. On Saturday, Central Park SummerStage, the Korean Cultural Center New York, and MeanRed present beat boss TOKiMONSTA, with Korean-Californian rapper Dumbfoundead and DJ Kero One. Then round out the weekend with rapper Dej Loaf, who plays a free Sunday show at the Ford Amphitheater on Coney Island. Keep it groovy.
7. Unleash your wild style.
Pull out your pop-locking for SummerStage’s free Wild Style 35th anniversary reunion show tonight at East River Park. Director Charlie Ahern, FUN Gallery’s Patti Astor, DJ Funk Flex, and more come out in honor of the influential 1983 film, which ended with a performance at this very location with folks like the Fantastic Five and Rammellzee. And while you can’t see prolific polymath and human art piece Rammellzee today, you can catch the exhibit “Rammellzee: Racing for Thunder” at Red Bull Arts New York through August 26, with more than 150 pieces from his 1970s days doing graffiti through his gallery works.
8. Let the rhythm get you.
The Battery Dance Festival kicks off this Saturday with a screening of Moving Stories, which follows the Battery Dance’s dancers as they travel internationally working with at-risk youth and using movement as therapy. Then see free dance performances from August 12 to 18 with the Statue of Liberty as your backdrop. Sunday’s lineup includes the Ariel Rivka Dance Company and Martha Graham School, and should you want to get in on the action yourself, free dance workshops will be held all week at the Battery Dance Studios. Space is limited, so reservations are required.
9. Immerse yourself in art.
Probably no one has ever declared that the best way to learn how to draw is to do it in an overnight marathon, but this way’s more fun. From 7 p.m. on Saturday to 7 a.m. on Sunday, the Art Students League of New York hosts its annual Draw-A-Thon, with live models, competitions, giveaways, and a free guided sketch session for first-timers. Plus games and snacks. Drawing makes you hungry! If you’d rather look at other people’s art, take a stroll On Canal, where 20 empty storefronts between West Broadway and Broadway have been taken over for art, media, and visitor experiences, including video paintings by Nitemind, cheeky animated sculptures by Amsterdam-based artist Frankey, DiMoDA 3.0’s collection of virtual works, and much more. Presented by Wallplay and Vibes Studios, admission to everything is free.
10. Find your roots.
The free Lincoln Center Out of Doors rounds out its season in Damrosch Park with Americanafest. Show up on Saturday for icon Mavis Staples, alongside the Grammy-winning producer and singer-songwriter Joe Henry. On Sunday, country-soulster Margo Price splits a bill with Lukas Nelson, a.k.a. Willie Nelson’s son, and his band Promise of the Real, who have toured with Neil Young.