The first performer of Central Park SummerStage 2019 has been announced: George Clinton, leader of renowned group Parliament-Funkadelic will be taking the stage on June 4th. This follows his announcement that after more than fifty years of touring, Parliament Funkadelic will be retiring from touring.
Clinton, now 78, will be leading the group on a farewell tour. The tour will span the globe from Australia to Japan and to North America. Known for their influential style of funk music, Parliament Funkadelic was especially popular during the 1970s. They drew influences from popular culture, science fiction, psychedelic imagery, and surrealism. Their final tour is titled “One Nation Under A Groove”, which references the group’s 1978 album.
Clinton’s retirement “has been coming a long time”, he said in a statement given to announce his final tour. We are glad that he has decided to make Central Park one of his last stops.
SummerStage’s venue has been undergoing construction to improve accessibility, including adding more restrooms, concession areas, and ADA access. The renovations are anticipated to upgrade the venue, located at 72nd street in the heart of Central Park. These renovations will significantly improve production elements, such as sound systems and lights.
Founded in 1986, SummerStage is now New York City’s largest, free outdoor performing arts festival. From May to October, 85+ free performances are given annually, and an estimated 250,000 audience members come to watch in total.