To our wonderful audiences for coming out and supporting us year after year, to our performing artists for their boundless energy and talent, and to our donors and foundations, without whom we couldn’t present such high-quality concerts at no cost to our audiences.

The 10th Annual Rite of Summer Music Festival on Governors Island Postponed to 2021 Season

Pam speaks to the audience before the Brooklyn Raga Massive performance

New York, NY May 18, 2020

Rite of Summer Music Festival’s 2020 Season has been postponed to Summer 2021 as a result of COVID-19 precautions and Federal, State, and Local guidelines. Due to mark its 10th Anniversary this summer on Governors Island, Rite of Summer Music Festival will celebrate this milestone with special extended festivities next year. The safety, health, and happiness of ROS audiences, artists, and crew are of primary concern to Artistic Directors Pam Goldberg and Blair McMillen.

Past seasons have presented such artists as: Pamela Z; JACK Quartet; Dawn of Midi; Imani Winds; Bang on a Can All-Stars; ETHEL; Ensemble Connect; Pam Goldberg; Miranda Cuckson; Blair McMillen; Nurit Pacht; Esther Noh; Caitlin Sullivan; Allison Charney; John Brancy; Peter Dugan; Kara Sainz; Theo Bleckmann; The Parker Quartet; New York Philharmonic’s Very Young Composers with ETHEL and Iktus Percussion; Jeffrey Zeigler; Ian David Rosenbaum; Todd Reynolds; Jonny Rogers; Jordan Tice; Mathias Kunzli; TIGUE; Grand Band; Talujon Percussion; Phyllis Chen; Anthony De Mare; Fireworks Ensemble; Classical Jam; House of Waters; Sirius Quartet; Sandbox Percussion; Contemporaneous; Don Byron New Gospel Quintet; Iktus Percussion; Brooklyn Raga Massive; DITHER; Collaborative Arts Ensemble; Ljova and the Kontraband; a Jed Distler-led extravaganza of Terry Riley’s In C featuring over 40 of New York’s top freelance musicians including members of
American Modern Ensemble, Newspeak, Momenta Quartet, and more; John Luther Adams’s Inuksuit with over 60 percussionists from Mantra Percussion, Ensemble et al, Loop 2.4.3, Palladium Percussion, Iktus Percussion, Sandbox Percussion, Contemporaneous, and students from Stony Brook, Queens College, NYU, and Mantra Youth Percussion.

About Rite of Summer Music Festival

Rite of Summer Music Festival presents free outdoor concerts from May through September on Governors Island. In a locale The New York Times has called a “Playground for the Arts,” the aim of the Festival is simple: to present the highest quality live performances, and to bring free contemporary classical music to as many people as possible in a relaxed, fun, outdoor setting. Rite of Summer shows are presented twice the same day, at 1pm and 3pm, for each respective date in Nolan Park. Audiences should feel free to walk by, stop and listen, lay down a picnic blanket and relax, eat lunch, mingle, and take in these engaging live performances. For more information, please visit:

About Governors Island

*Governors Island is a 172-acre island in the heart of New York Harbor nestled between Lower Manhattan and the Brooklyn waterfront. Eight minutes from the energy and excitement of the City, the Island is a popular seasonal destination. An award-winning new park is complemented by dozens of unique historic buildings, environmental educational facilities, a rich arts and culture program and a 22-acre National Monument managed by the National Park Service. Unlike anywhere else in New York, Governors Island offers peaceful settings with sweeping views of the Harbor, Lower Manhattan skyline and Statue of Liberty. Looking ahead, the Island will be activated year-round with expanded educational, commercial and non-profit uses.

*Delayed Opening for 2020 due to COVID-19 precautions. Please check the GI website for updates on opening day.

Press Contact
Alanna Maharajh Stone
[email protected]