guides

Family-friendly shows and performances in NYC – updated!

Book some tickets and take the kids to a performance the whole family will love!

By Meredith Kurnov, Editor & Publisher of Macaroni Kid Brooklyn NW February 16, 2024

Living in a city bursting with the best talent, entertainment, and venues the world has to offer, we are so fortunate to have such convenient access to quality family performances! Here's a comprehensive round up of upcoming and ongoing family-friendly entertainment in and around BK and NYC over the next few months. We update the list regularly. Feel free to bookmark and circle back to this list for birthdays and special occasions! Missing a family-friendly show? Email us!

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BROOKLYN SHOWS

Barclays Center in Downtown Brooklyn
In the heart of Brooklyn since 2012, at the crossroads of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues, Barclays Center is setting a new standard as the showcase venue for the world's most thrilling entertainment and sports events. Upcoming family-friendly highlights:





The Jalopy Theatre in Red Hook
The Jalopy Theatre and School of Music is a multi-faceted arts space showcasing evolving folk and traditional music and art from NYC, the Americas, and the world. Programming supports artists, fosters multi-generational community, and provides enrichment and education about our shared musical heritage. Upcoming family-friendly highlights:





Kings Theatre in Flatbush
Discover the beauty of Kings Theatre, a historic venue in the heart of Brooklyn. Originally opened in 1929 and reopened after meticulous restoration in 2015, Kings boasts a rich history and stunning architecture that has made it a beloved cultural landmark for generations. Upcoming family-friendly highlights:




The Old Stone House & Washington Park in Park Slope
The Old Stone House & Washington Park is a historic house museum, a Revolutionary War battle site, and the original home of the Brooklyn Dodgers. We are also a neighborhood cultural institution focused on connecting the past to the present through educational, environmental, and arts programming all year round.

  • Ms. T’s Cranky Tales
    Saturday, February 17 at 3:30pm | $25
    Ms. T, aka. Theresa Linnihan, local storyteller, performer and puppeteer shares her "Cranky Tales" at the Old Stone House. She uses an illustrated scroll and shadow puppets to animate enthralling seasonal stories.



Family Magic Shows at Brooklyn Magic Shop in Carroll Gardens
Ongoing: Select Saturday or Sundays | $25/ticket | For ages 5+

A 60-minute fun and engaging Family Magic Show. Through storytelling, lots of audience participation, and fun magical illusions; the entire family will leave feeling completely enchanted. Perfect for a fun-filled magical family day, right in the heart of Carroll Gardens!




Rock and Roll Playhouse at Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg
Ongoing: Sundays at 12pm, 11am doors | Tickets are $16, Kids under 1 are free

Performing songs created by the most iconic musicians in rock history, The Rock and Roll Playhouse band offers its core audience of families with children age ten and under games, movement, stories and an opportunity to rock out in an effort to educate children and explore their creativity. Brooklyn Bowl has a full kid-friendly menu, adult-friendly bar, and bowling! 




Marionette Puppet Shows at Puppetworks in Park Slope
Ongoing: Saturdays, Sundays, & holidays at 12:30pm & 2:30pm | Tickets are $10 for kids, $11 for adults

Puppetworks is an intimate, nonprofit theater founded in 1980 presenting marionette puppet-show versions of classic tales.





Bindlestiff Family Cirkus Open Stage Variety Show in DUMBO
Tuesday, March 12, April 9, May 7 at 7pm | $15 suggested donation

City Tech presents the Bindlestiff Open Stage Variety Show, a monthly open mic for variety artists, where emerging performers and seasoned pros alike hone new acts in front of a live audience, hosted by Bindlestiff Family Cirkus co-founder Keith Nelson.





Puppetsburg shows at locations around Brooklyn
Showtimes and pricing varies | For ages 0-4

Puppetsburg does interactive, culturally relevant puppet shows for 4mos-4yrs. Our shows are 45 minutes long and involve dancing, instruments, dress-up "photo-ops," and bubble time (!) followed by a different puppet story each week.





Hopalong Andrew kids concert at locations around Brooklyn
See locations below | $20 per family (cash or venmo)

Hopalong Andrew sings cowboy songs about city life, for young cowpokes performed in the great tradition of the American West. Locations include Dekalb Market Hall/CityPoint, Underwood Park, CityPoint BKLYN, Cadman Park, Fort Greene Park, and Carroll Park. Check Instagram for the latest schedule.




MANHATTAN SHOWS

Bessie's Big Shot at Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre in Central Park 
Ongoing: Thurs-Sundays through May 31 at 11am & 1pm | $10-15 Tickets | For ages 3-8

In this fun and high-flying, family-friendly adventure, Bessie the cow dreams of joining the circus. But can she lift more than Ziegfried, the strongest man in the world? Fly on the trapeze high above the crowd? Come root Bessie on in this variety show as she attempts the impossible and searches for her special talents. 

BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center
BMCC Tribeca Performing Arts Center, the longest operating performance venue in lower Manhattan, is dedicated to identifying, supporting and presenting established and emerging artists in a variety of disciplines, including music, dance and children’s theatre to the diverse Metropolitan audience.

  • The Peking Acrobats
    Saturday, March 16, 7pm | $50
    The Peking Acrobats have redefined audience perceptions of Chinese acrobatics. They perform daring maneuvers atop a precarious pagoda of chairs and display their technical prowess at such arts as trick-cycling, precision tumbling, juggling, somersaulting, and gymnastics. They push the limits of human ability, defying gravity with amazing displays of contortion, flexibility, and control.
  • Rosie Revere Engineer & Friends
    Saturday, May 11, 11:00 am | $40 | For ages 5+
    Ms. Greer’s classroom includes three inquisitive out-of-the-box thinkers. Rosie Revere has big dreams. Iggy Peck has a relentless passion for architecture. And Ada Twist’s curiosity can drive her teacher crazy.  A fun new musical based on the books Rosie Revere, Engineer; Iggy Peck, Architect; and Ada Twist Scientist by Andrea Beaty, which spotlights the STEM curriculum (focusing on science, technology, engineering and math).

The Little Orchestra Society: Gershwin & Copland <3 NY! at 92nd Street Y
Saturday or Sunday, April 20 & 21 — 11:30am or 1:00pm | $23-$61/ticket | For ages 3-10

L.O.S. KIDS is an experiential presentation of orchestra music for children and families. What is better than one amazing composer? TWO of them, of course! Gershwin and Copland visit 92NY to share their love of NYC, and to fill our hearts with their iconic music! Young composers join to have their pieces premiered, alongside soloists and dancers from the New York Theatre Ballet School. Let’s celebrate the City in style!

Fairytale Shows at the Galli Theater in FiDi 
Ongoing, Select weekend dates | Adults $25/Kids $20 | For kids 3+ 

The Galli Theater produces per year 10—14 modern and innovative adaptations of fairy tales from around the world that entertain and teach valuable life lessons. Galli’s unique style is that all shows are very interactive and with lots of improv elements. Past Fairytales performances include: The 3 Little Pigs, The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, The Princess and the Pea, Rapunzel, Cinderella.

Kids Theater Shows at The New Victory Theater in Midtown
Due to theater renovations, three New Victory shows* this season will take place at Stage 42 (422 W. 42nd Street).

New Victory brings kids to the arts and the arts to kids in and beyond New York City. Powered by New 42, whose mission is to make extraordinary performing arts a vital part of everyone’s life from the earliest years onwards, New Victory connects its audiences to new cultures, artists and stories through its international programming online and in its historic Times Square theater.

  • 360 ALLSTARS for ages 6+
    February 17-March 3 | Tickets start at $24
    A supercharged circus starring world record-holding athletes and artists.
  • Música for ages 4-7
    March 9-17 | Tickets start at $28 | Sensory-friendly performance March 16 3pm
    ¡Celebremos! Celebrate inspiring female musicians in an uplifting bilingual concert.
  • Aanika’s Elephants for ages 6+
    March 29-April 7 | Tickets start at $24 | Sensory-friendly performance April 7 12pm
    A heartfelt story about the plight of Africa’s elephants and the meaning of family.
  • I’mPossible for ages 5+
    April 12-28 | Tickets start at $24 | Sensory-friendly performance April 28 5pm
    An exuberant big top extravaganza that is truly accessible to all.
  • and more through June!

Vital Theatre Company at Actors Temple Theatre in Midtown
VITAL THEATRE COMPANY is a community of artists who believe that a shared theatrical experience profoundly affects people’s lives. We create stories that challenge our audience to ask questions, make discoveries and engage in dialogue.

  • Vital's The Wizard of Oz
    Select Saturdays 11am through March 30 | $60+
    A classic tale that has been entertaining audiences for ages.  Rediscover the joy of following the yellow brick road with Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tinman, the Cowardly Lion, and even munchkin puppetry, as they travel through a re-imagined world of Oz.
  • Pinkalicious The Musical
    Select Sundays 11am through April 28 | $60+
    Pinkalicious can't stop eating pink cupcakes despite warnings from her parents. Her pink indulgence lands her at the doctor's office with Pinkititis, an affliction that turns her pink from head to toe - a dream come true for this pink loving enthusiast. But when her hue goes too far, only Pinkalicious can figure out how to get out of this predicament.
  • Fancy Nancy The Musical
    Mar 16-Mar 23, Select Saturdays 11am | $60+
    Fancy Nancy and her friends, Bree, Rhonda, Wanda, and Lionel are going to be performing in their very first show, "Deep Sea Dances."  Nancy is positive, that's fancy for 100 percent sure, that she and Bree will be picked to be mermaids.  


NYC Children's Theatre at Theatre Row in Midtown 

The mission of New York City Children’s Theater is to promote children’s literacy and social development through sustainable, accessible professional theater productions and arts-in-education programs.

  • Pinocchio for ages 4-8
    March 23-April 14 | Sensory friendly performance April 7th at 2:30pm & April 13th at 11am
    Pinocchio is a wooden puppet who longs to be a real kid. Pinocchio leaves Papa Gepp’s workshop and causes havoc everywhere!. On Pinocchio’s journey, they meets a cast of colorful characters like a sneaky fox, a crafty cat, and a giant fish! With the help of Lady Blue, a wise cricket, and you, will Pinocchio make smart decisions and become a real kid?


Teatro SEA in the Lower East Side

Established in 1985, SEA (Society of the Educational Arts, Inc.), is the premiere Bilingual Arts-in-Education Organization and Latino Children’s Theatre in the United States. SEA has created and produced a combination of educational theatre productions and art workshops/programs specifically designed to examine, challenge and create possible solutions for current educational, social and community issues. 

  • The Colors of Frida @ Repertorio Español
    Saturday, March 24 3pm | $10
    A bilingual how about the great Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, which combines storytelling, music, visual arts, puppets and audience participation. 
  • Rancho Tales @ Teatro Circulo
    Saturday, March 9 3pm | $10
    Rancho Tales is a delightful retelling of some family favorites stories incorporating music, puppetry, movement, and visuals. It’s a perfect show for the little ones from newborn to five years old, however it also is fun for adults, as they also sing and clap along to songs both in Spanish and English, adding a cultural treat for all.
  • Ricitos and the Three Bears @ Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture
    Saturday, April 20 3pm | $10 | For PreK-5th Grade
    Mr. Oscar, Mrs. Osaura, little Oscarito and of course the over curious, super-snooping Ricitos, or Goldilocks, lead audiences on a comical adventure as Goldilocks confronts the three bears and has to learn to take responsibility, say sorry and make friends.

Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center in UWS
Merkin Hall’s innovative programming, intimate scale and near perfect acoustics have earned it a reputation as one of New York City’s finest concert venues. Noted in the New York Times for its “reputation for avant-gardism of a cool and cerebral nature,” Merkin presents adventurous work—including many world premieres—by contemporary composers and some of today’s most acclaimed and inspiring performers.


Family Saturdays with NYC Ballet at Lincoln Center in Upper West Side
Saturday, March 2, June 1 | Tickets start at $22 | For ages 5+

Join us as we make our way through the Company ranks, showing you the path from young student to professional dancer. Find out about dancers’ training, daily preparation, and what it is like to perform onstage at Lincoln Center in this interactive presentation designed especially for family audiences. This program will give you an exclusive sneak peek behind the curtain at the look of a dancer’s life.


Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Kids, Teens, and Family Programs at in Upper West Side
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (LCPA) is a cultural and civic cornerstone of New York City. The primary advocate for the entire Lincoln Center campus, our strategic priorities include: fostering collaboration and deepening impact across the Lincoln Center resident organizations; championing inclusion and increasing the accessibility and reach of Lincoln Center’s work; and nurturing innovation on stage and off to help ensure the arts are at the center of civic life for all. LCPA presents hundreds of programs each year, offered primarily for free and choose-what-you-pay, including many specially designed for young audiences, families, and those with disabilities.

  • Leyla McCalla
    Friday, February 16 - Sunday, February 18 | Suggested $20
    For this family-friendly performance, McCalla will introduce young audiences to Haiti's musical and political traditions.
  • The Storyville Mosquito
    March 14-15 | Suggested $20
    Performed, filmed, projected and scored on stage at each show, The Storyville Mosquito is an emotive theater experience that’s fun for the entire family!
  • Shamarr Allen
    Saturday, March 23 11am | FREE
    A performance by Allen is the True Orleans experience, designed to be enjoyed by audiences of all ages!
  • Tiger Tale
    April 5-7 | Suggested $20
    An insightful story of family relationships, Tiger Tale is an emotionally charged and brilliantly comic sensory adventure!
  • TREE: A World in Itself
    April 12-14 | Suggested $5
    TREE: A World in Itself is a multi-sensory, interactive universe enveloped in soft light, music, and silence; created for neurodiverse audiences.
  • Playful Tiger
    April 12-14 | Suggested $5
    A sensory, inclusive dance-theatre performance made especially for and with neurodiverse young people aged 7 and up.
  • Lachi
    April 13 11am & 7pm | FREE
    Share a moment with award-winning recording artist and personality Lachi with a piano concert of her critically acclaimed songs.
  • TREE
    April 19-21 | Suggested $20
    Babies and toddlers will be mesmerized by TREE, a multi-sensory, interactive universe enveloped in soft light, music, and silence
  • The Pa'akai We
    May 17-19 | Suggested $20
    The Pa’akai We Bring mixes ancient stories, hula, live music, original songs into a tasty potluck of performance, joyously served up with aloha!


Family Performances at Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall's mission is to present extraordinary music and musicians on the three stages of this legendary hall, to bring the transformative power of music to the widest possible audience, to provide visionary education programs, and to foster the future of music through the cultivation of new works, artists, and audiences.

  • Camille’s Rainbow
    April 2-6 10am & 11:30am | For ages 0–2
    Experience an immersive musical world in Camille’s Rainbow, an interactive performance for babies and toddlers that celebrates unbridled creative play.
  • Family Day: Spring Fest
    Saturday, April 20 12-4pm | FREE
    Enjoy free, interactive, and fun musical activities and performances in Carnegie Hall’s Resnick Education Wing. Family Day is an anticipated musical adventure that returns each season with brand-new themes and activities. This April, join us for a celebration of all things spring.
  • Musical Explorers Family Concert
    Saturday, May 11 12pm & 3pm | $18 
    Discover music from around the world in this vibrant, highly interactive concert for children.
  • Lullaby Project Celebration Concert
    Saturday, June 1 3pm | $23
    The Lullaby Project—now in its 12th season—is a rapidly expanding program in which new parents and pregnant people work with professional artists to create personal lullabies for their babies. In this heartwarming annual concert, audiences enjoy live performances of new songs written by families in New York City and around the world.


92nd Street Y in Upper West Side
The 92nd Street Y, New York is a world-class cultural and community center where people all over the world connect through culture, arts, entertainment and conversation. For over 150 years, we have harnessed the power of arts and ideas to enrich, enlighten and change lives, and the power of community to repair the world.

  • Ice Queen
    Feb 17,18, & 24 | $20+
    A new musical adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s wintry classic.
  • Red Riding Hood
    Feb 18, 24, 25, Mar 2 & 3 | $20+
    A new version of the beloved classic Little Red Riding Hood comes to life in dance and song!
  • Messy Millie
    Mar 3, 9 & 10 | $20+
    A joyful original musical — and a magical ode to messiness.
  • Alice in Wonderland
    Mar 17, 23 & 24 | $20+
    Lewis Carroll’s classic Alice in Wonderland comes to life in an all-new adaptation created just for 92NY.
  • Adventure to Neverland
    Apr 13, 14 & 21 | $20+
    Join Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, and Captain Hook and fly away on a joyous journey to Neverland!
  • The Tempest
    May 4 & 5 | $20+
    Magic. Family. True love. Join us for an original musical retelling of Shakespeare’s classic play created just for young audiences.

 

Ongoing Broadway and Off-Broadway shows:

NYC Off-Broadway Week returns through March 3, bringing you unforgettable performances in the City's most intimate venues. Secure your 2-for-1 tickets today with code OBW24.

Recommended for all ages:

  • The Gazillion Bubble Show (Recommended for all ages.) Step into an interactive bubble world and be dazzled by spellbinding lasers, spectacular lighting effects, and jaw-dropping masterpieces of bubble artistry. Discounted tix 

Recommended for ages 3+:

  • Blue Man Group (Children under 3 are not permitted.) Join three enigmatic bald and blue men for a multi-sensory experience.

Recommended for ages 5+:

  • Little Shop of Horrors (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) Experience this cult favorite musical as it was meant to be seen. 

Recommended for ages 6+:

Recommended for ages 8+:

  • & Juliet The Olivier Award-winning West End hit featuring the songs of Max Martin arrives on Broadway. Discounted tix
  • Hadestown (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) The Tony-winning musical that follows the mythical quest of Orpheus. Discounted tix
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) Experience J.K. Rowling’s magical universe like never before. Discounted tix
  • MJ the Musical (No one under the age of 5 will be permitted into the theatre.) The life story of Michael Jackson arrives on Broadway.
  • The Play That Goes Wrong A celebration of the best of live theater… and the worst.
  • Water for Elephants The new musical based on Sara Gruen's best-selling novel of the same name arrives on Broadway.
  • Wicked (Children under the age of 5 are not permitted.) Meet the witches of Oz before Dorothy dropped in. Discounted tix

Recommended for ages 9+:

  • Spamalot (Children under 4 will not be admitted.) The show that set Broadway back 1,000 years returns!

Recommended for ages 10+:

  • Bad Cinderella Andrew Lloyd Webber's new musical arrives on Broadway! 
  • Hamilton (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) A fresh look at the era of the Founding Fathers. Discounted tix
  • Merrily We Roll Along Daniel Radcliffe, Jonathan Groff and Lindsay Mendez star in the Broadway revival of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth's musical.
  • SIX: The Musical (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) A pop concert spectacle featuring the six ex-wives of Henry VIII.
  • The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theatre.) Icon of a generation Marc Summers tells his story in a new play written by Alex Brightman.

Recommended for ages 12+:

  • Moulin Rouge The Musical (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) A theatrical celebration of truth, beauty, freedom and love.
  • Sweeney Todd Josh Groban and Annaleigh Ashford star in Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler's classic musical.
  • Some Like it Hot (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted.) A new musical comedy based on the 1959 film of the same name. 
  • Titanique The music of Céline Dion combines with the Oscar-winning Titanic for a hysterical and joyful slay-fest.

Recommended for ages 13+:

  • Chicago (Children under 4 will not be permitted.) The Tony-winning revival of Kander and Ebb’s musical will razzle dazzle you.
  • Here Lies Love (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theatre.) The immersive disco pop musical based on the rise and fall of Imelda Marcos, featuring a score by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim.
  • Kimberly Akimbo (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theater.) Discounted Kimberly Akimbo tix David Lindsay-Abaire and Jeanine Tesori's musical adaptation of the acclaimed play of the same name arrives on Broadway.
  • The Book of Mormon (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theater.) The nine-time Tony Award-winning Best Musical. Discounted Book of Mormon tix
  • The Cottage (Children under the age of 4 are not permitted in the theatre.) Eric McCormack, Laura Bell Bundy, Lilli Cooper, Nehal Joshi, Alex Moffat, and Dana Steingold make up an amorous, glamorous cast in the new comedy written by Sandy Rustin and directed by Jason Alexander.

Coming soon! The Who's Tommy (March 8 Previews) and The Wiz (March 29 Previews)




NYC BOROUGHS & BEYOND

Queens Theatres

Bronx Theatres

  • Lehman Center for the Performing Arts (Kingsbridge Heights)
    Consider a schlep to the Bronx for a wide range of captivating afternoon cultural performances coming up at the Lehman Center for the Performing Arts. Not far from the Bronx Zoo and NY Botanical Gardens, you could easily turn a performance into a full-day adventure.

Staten Island Theatres

New Jersey Theatres

Have a performance to add to the list? Email us at MacKidBrooklynNW@MacaroniKid.com.







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