5 free events, from the National Book Awards to the Performa Telethon

5 free events, from the National Book Awards to the Performa Telethon

Looking for something to do this week? Here are five free events to attend online.


Celebrate Broadway icons

What: Broadway VS: André De Shields and Lillias White
When: Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. Eastern
Where: Link sent with RSVP

Catch Broadway legends André De Shields and Lillias White in conversation as part of “Broadway VS,” presented by the Broadway Advocacy Coalition (BAC) and hosted by “Hamilton” and “Shuffle Along” alum Amber Iman. In addition to chatting, the pair will sing songs from their career during the event, which benefits BAC and Cody Renard Richard Scholarship Program.

A pre-show with Iman begins at 6:45 p.m. Eastern.


Immerse yourself in art then get some good book recs

What: Performa Telethon
When: Nov. 18, from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Eastern
Where: The Performa website

The pioneering arts group Performa is celebrating 15 years of existence with a blowout, eight-hour telethon. Broadcast live from Pace Gallery, the day’s events will include new commissions, a special appearance by pianist Lang Lang and “QVC-style” segments, during which viewers can buy specially made “home goods” by artists like Cindy Sherman and Barbara Kruger.

The telethon, produced in collaboration with E. S. P. TV, pays homage to artist Nam June Paik, who will be remembered in a musical performance by Laurie Anderson.

Barbara Kruger, "Untitled" (Vase), 2020. One of the "home goods" available during the Peforma Telethon. Photo: Alistair Matthews.
Barbara Kruger, “Untitled” (Vase), 2020. One of the “home goods” available during the Peforma Telethon. Photo: Alistair Matthews.

What: The 71st Annual National Book Awards
When: Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. Eastern

Where: The National Book Awards website and YouTube

If you’ve always wanted to attend the glimmering affair that is the National Book Awards, now is your chance. The virtual event, hosted this year by Jason Reynolds, will name winners in the Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Translated Literature and Young People’s Literature categories, in addition to granting Lifetime Achievement awards to Walter Mosley and Carolyn Reidy.

No dress is code mandated, but we personally won’t turn down the opportunity to don some formal wear.


Merge art and climate in a chat with curators

What: The Other Side of the Sun: An Afrofuturist Approach to Climate Change
When: Nov. 20 at 1:30 p.m. Eastern
Where: Link sent with registration

Poised at the intersection of racial justice, art and climate change, this discussion from the Human Impacts Institute’s 2020 Creative Climate Awards explores what needs to be done to reach environmental equity.

Presented as part of the series “Art and Action Chats,” which occurs weekly through Dec. 18, the event is led by Executive Director of the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art Amy Andrieux. Featured guests include Kimberly Becoat, Siara Mencia, Run P., Whitney McGuire and Dominique Drakeford.


What: Works & Process at Lincoln Center: Les Ballet Afrik
When: Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m. Eastern
Where: YouTube 

Miss seeing the Lincoln Center campus? Catch a filmed performance of Omari Wiles and Les Ballet Afrik’s new commission “New York Is Burning.” Developed during the Works & Process Hudson Valley bubble residency this summer and captured at Lincoln Center, the piece pays homage to the 30th anniversary of the documentary “Paris Is Burning.”

Something to look forward to: a four-part docuseries chronicling the creation of the piece (and others within the residency) will air on ALL ARTS next year.

Top Image: Laurie Anderson and Peter Gabriel, "This Is the Picture." Performed in Nam June Paik’s "Good Morning Mr. Orwell," 1984. Film still. Director of Photography: John Michael Pelech. Courtesy Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI), New York.