The Klezmatics with Joshua Nelson, Kerouac at 100, and Suzanne Vega join the 2022 Celebration of Arts and Activism

Two-week Festival Expands Footprint and Scope Across Lower Manhattan, West Side to East Side,
Sept. 10 to Sept. 25, 2022

The fourth Village Trip Festival will present a diverse program of cultural and arts events in downtown Manhattan. The two-week-long Festival, celebrating arts and activism, will now take place across all the history-laden neighborhoods of Greenwich Village, the West Village, and the East Village – from Washington Square Park to Tompkins Square Park.

Festival programming will feature jazz, rock and classical music performances, local neighborhood and history walks, topical talks and panel discussions exploring critical issues such as human rights, women’s political action, and freedom of speech, as well as an exhibition of neighborhood artists, and the return of David Amram as Village Trip Artist Emeritus.

“Our goal is to bring the city alive – from West to East, and back again – with a rich slate of happenings that represent all that’s made downtown Manhattan a magnet for creativity and activism for more than a century and a half,” said Liz Thomson and Cliff Pearson, Joint Artistic Directors.

The signature event will be a free concert in Washington Square Park featuring The Klezmatics and gospel singer Joshua Nelson, along with Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping. The open-air concert is scheduled for Saturday afternoon, Sept. 24.

The Klezmatics: photo Chuck Fishman
The Klezmatics: photo by Chuck Fishman

“The Klezmatics are thrilled to be a part of this year’s Village Trip Festival. It is especially meaningful since the Village Trip is expanding to include the East Village, whose kinetic energy was so vital to the band’s genesis in the 1980s. We are also beyond excited for the opportunity to present Brother Moses Smote the Water, our ecstatic collaboration with the mighty ‘Prince of Kosher Gospel,’ Joshua Nelson, as part of our Washington Square Park debut.” said Lorin Sklamberg, founding member of The Klezmatics.

There will also be a unique celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s musical Wonderful Town with Jamie Bernstein, the Maestro’s daughter, and Janis Siegel, Grammy-garlanded vocalist and member of The Manhattan Transfer.


 “My father loved New York City and had a special place in his heart for Greenwich Village, where he lived in his early twenties. All his enthusiasm comes bursting out of the score of his second Broadway show, Wonderful Town, which takes place in the Village. What fun it will be to visit the show’s real-life locations, and then hear Bernstein’s music in a proper downtown cabaret setting, right on Washington Square!” said Jamie Bernstein.

Additional highlights (in formation):

  • The 8th Street Experience: Kick-off, outdoor free concert with a line-up of musical hooligans led by David Amram and friends (West Eighth Street at MacDougal, Sat. Sept. 10)
  • Jack Kerouac at 100: A series of Village Trip events, honoring Kerouac’s centennial, including:
    • On the Road: A staged reading with music, featuring selections from the generation-defining opus, directed by David Deblinger of HB Studio. (Strand Book Store)
    • Kerouac’s Village: A panel discussion about the NYC neighborhoods where Kerouac lived and worked.
    • Classical Jack: A musical performance of classical selections that inspired Kerouac. (St. John’s in the Village)
    • Children of the American Bop Night: A spirited evening of jazz inspired by Kerouac and performed by David Amram and Latin jazz virtuoso Bobby Sanabria. (Joe’s Pub – Sept. 16)
  • Framing the Village: An exhibition of paintings, drawings, and photographs by Village artists depicting – or inspired by – the neighborhoods of the West Village, Greenwich Village and East Village. Curated by NYC artist, Marc Kehoe. (Revelation Gallery, St. John’s in the Village)
    The closing date for entries has been extended to July 30.
  • Global Greenwich Village: Inaugural Village Trip lecture by Robert Snyder, Manhattan Borough Historian, and Professor of American Studies and Journalism (Rutgers University, Newark), examining the Village as a mecca for artists, musicians, and writers who sought social justice and political change. Professor Snyder will also cite the impact of Afro-Cuban revolutionaries, and politically astute women in New York.
  • I’ll Take Manhattan: A celebration of New York in song, performed and convened by Janis Siegel (The Manhattan Transfer) with pianist, arranger John Di Martino, and friends. (Joe’s Pub – Sept. 18)
  • Eleanor’s Legacy: A panel discussion honoring Eleanor Roosevelt, long-time Washington Square Park resident, and her dedication to human rights and women’s leadership, 60 years after her death.
  • James Beard Townhouse: On-site tour of Beard’s West Village home, his long-time culinary mecca on West 12th Street.
  • Freedom of Speech in Contested Times: A panel discussion exploring some of the parallels between the expression of social and political unrest from the past and today.

Presenting partners and venues for 2022 include Drom, East Village Community Coalition, Figaro Café, HB Studio, James Beard Foundation, Joe’s Pub, La Sala de Pepe & Foto Espacio Gallery, Pangea Restaurant & Cabaret, St. John’s in the Village, Strand Book Store, Village Alliance, Village Preservation, Washington Square Hotel and North Square Restaurant & Lounge, and the NYPL branches at Jefferson Market and Tompkins Square Park.

The Village Trip Festival is a not-for-profit organization. Donations are tax-deductible. To learn more visit

Dan Scheffey
Programming & Publicity
(917) 647-7626