Whether a student of the arts or just someone who appreciates a good concert or play, there is something for everyone when visiting the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Even a beginner will learn and appreciate the arts in new and different ways through mediums they may have not even been aware of before. BAM has been at the head of the arts community in New York for the last 150 years, focusing on helping artists find themselves and express their creativity - through music, dance, theater, and visual arts.
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They pride themselves on finding up and coming artists and giving them their start, as well as highlighting those that are experts at their craft. They are still going strong, and now run and operate three separate buildings as part of a great BAM Campus - Peter Sharp Building, Harvey Theater, and BAM Fisher. They are also very focused on getting children involved in the arts as early as possible - offering many workshops, camps, and programs specifically designed for them.
The main attractions at the three sites that compose the Brooklyn Academy of Music (or BAM for short) offer a few distinct categories of attractions. Check the website for specific information about what may be going on during the time of any planned visit as events may change.
Film - BAM offers many different films at its three buildings, featuring a mix of today’s films, smaller indie movies, and also theater series that are aimed at specific audiences - children, seniors, etc. Films rotate frequently to make sure to feature as many hit and up and coming films, as well as making sure to show artistically daring pieces.
Theater - There is a large focus on theater options at BAM as well. With larger, more well-known pieces as well as pieces that have been written and performed by local artists, theater is a large part of the attraction of visiting the academy. Guests can anticipate never seeing the same piece twice.
Dance - While visiting BAM, make sure to take in a dance performance. All types of dance styles are represented at the academy - African, contemporary, jazz, interpretive.
Music - Obviously, as the name dictates, BAM focuses heavily on music and all of the many ways that it can be interpreted in modern culture. The academy brings in well-known performers in categories like jazz and classical, as well as more interpretive and creative musical types like “Cellular Songs” and music to honor Cambodian genocide victims.
Opera - Another musical category that deserves its own feature is the academy’s offerings with opera. With many of the standard opera pieces represented, as well as many up and coming opera performances with local artists, opera is possibly the most frequently featured at the academy.
Visual Arts - There is also a smaller section of the academy that focuses on the visual arts, with a rotating series of art installment pieces. Some are more well-known (David Byrne prints) and some are local artist focused.
Kids - Besides the offerings focused on adults, the academy also focuses strongly on arts as they relate to and can engage with children, as children are the future of arts. There are performances that make use of puppetry, a film festival that focuses on children, different visual arts performances featuring on children (as well as those written by and with child performers), and other art forms meant to interest children in the arts.
Due to their focus on involving children in the arts, field trips are an integral part of the mission of BAM. Field trip to the academy helps to encourage and ignite creativity, imagination, and education by providing access to pre-show workshops, post show question and answer sessions, and an experience that helps students see art in a new and different way. In the past, some of these question and answer sessions have been hosted by well-known stars like Ethan Hawke! Contact the academy ahead of a visit for reservation, prices, and available shows. There are ticketing assistance programs in place for schools who may not be able to pay full price for a field trip. Study guides are provided ahead of time on the website, focusing on specific grade groups (kindergarten through 2nd, 3rd through 7th, and 9th through 12th) and align with state specific education standards (Common Core and NY State).
Brooklyn Academy of Music, Peter Jay Sharp Building, 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, 11217, BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY, 11217, BAM Fisher, 321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, NY 11217, Phone: 718-636-4182