This Week’s Best LGBT Events in New York City

Written by | Things to Do

Fire Island Dance Fest

Looking for gay things to do in New York? Whether you’re looking for drag shows, parties talks & lectures, film screenings, theater, or art exhibits, Metrosource has got you covered. Our complete list of LGBT things to do is just a click away, but here are some upcoming queer events.

This week: This week: Fire Island hosts a weekend of dance, there’s a spooky candlelight tour of one of Manhattan’s oldest (and maybe haunted) homes, and the Whitney wants to take you back to the swinging ’60s!

Kweendom Pride Hangover

Friday, July 19

Join us for a night of comedy at Pete’s Candy Store that’s sure to make Mike Pence uncomfortable. It’s not just gay, it’s GAAAAAYYYYY. Gay like The B-52s are gay. Gay like Hocus Pocus is gay. Gay like Pee-Wee’s Playhouse is gay. Come for the laughs, stay for the fresh faces in your Grindr grid. Featuring: Sydnee Washington (MTV), Justin Randall (NY Post), Melody Kamali (Audible), Becca Beberaggi ( and Keenan Steiner (NY Comedy Festival). The night is hosted by Bobby Hankinson (Awkward Sex and the City).

Candlelight Ghost Tour

Friday, July 19

At the Merchant’s House Museum, doors slam, floorboards creak, voices call into the dead of night. Venture into the shadows of history to see “Manhattan’s Most Haunted House” (NY Times) by flickering candlelight. Eight family members died in the house — and some say they never left. On this 50-minute tour, you’ll hear true tales of inexplicable occurrences from the people who actually experienced them, as well as the spine-tingling results of ongoing paranormal investigations.

Queer Tiger Beat

Friday, July 19

Nikki Palumbo and Gwynna Forgham-Thrift are two queer adults hosting a teen magazine-turned-standup comedy show at the Duplex! This month’s issue features the very funny and hunky Jes Tom (Caroline’s), Eva Victor (Comedy Central), Lorena Russi (Late Show), Carolyn Bergier (Dyking Out), Mila Myles (them.) and Taylor Ortega (Disney).

Fire Island Dance Festival

Saturday, July 20

The charitable event of the Fire Island summer returns to the Pines July 19-21 as Fire Island Dance Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary. Don’t miss world-class dance ranging from ballet to Broadway set on a picturesque waterfront stage on the Fire Island Pines’ Great South Bay, as well as unparalleled opportunities to meet and mingle with fellow Fire Islanders. This year’s lineup features choreography by Kyle Abraham, Emmy Award winner Al Blackstone, Michelle Dorrance, the legendary Paul Taylor, Tony Award winner Christopher Wheeldon and mor

Bar Dykes by Merril Mushroom (NYC Premiere!)

Ongoing through August 3

In Bar Dykes at the Flea Theater, playwright Merril Mushroom draws on her experiences as a lesbian in the Deep South and New York City in the pre-Stonewall era. She transports us into the hidden subculture of lesbian society in mid-century America, and into the women and their relationships in a precarious time.

Follow 11 bar dykes as they drink, dance, date, duke it out, and grab a few undisturbed moments. Bar Dykes will be an immersive staging so the audience can experience and eavesdrop on a girls’ night out captured in time as it once was.

Queer as German Folk

Ongoing through August 3

Goethe-Institut New York takes the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots as an opportunity to outline the current state of discourse on queer emancipation. “Queer as German Folk” puts a spotlight on the transatlantic dialogue between civil society LGBTI actors, discusses the adjusting historical perspectives and questions the dominance/ hegemony of the traditional cis-male narrative.

The intimate and innovative “exhibition on demand”, which runs through Saturday, August 3 (Mon-Sat, 1:00-6:30pm), will focus on the close and vital interactions between the German and U.S. movements, while also taking criticisms into account about the perceived illegitimate appropriation of this pivotal moment of queer history by a white, gay, middle-class mainstream. The exhibition attempts to draw a picture that is historically more comprehensive, while not losing sight of the growth of the homosexual emancipation movement in the German Democratic Republic.

Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s

Ongoing through September 22

The notion of color is tied to countless constructs, from race to gender to politics. Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s is an exhibition which draws from The Whitney’s existing collection and features an array of artists who also served as activists during the Civil Rights and Women’s Rights movements. Their work reveals just how powerful these varying tones can be. A mostly abstract presentation invites viewers to draw their own conclusions regarding perception and presence, shades and shapes.

The White Dress by Roger Q. Mason


Meet the Howard family at Access Theater: Theo is a busy black attorney; Hazel is his dutiful Filipina wife; and their son is bright, promising Jonathan. No, f**k that – here’s the Howard family: Theo has been pushed in the closet; Hazel’s Tiger mom tactics have kept him there; and all Jonathan wants to do is kiss Winnie, wear femme clothes and love themself.

Part religious rite, part dance/performance, The White Dress is Jonathan Howard’s genderqueer coming-of-age journey through familial shaming, peer bullying, and unrequited love to redefine what male looks, sounds and feels like. Underscored live by Brooklyn-based DJ SunSon PDX and directed and choreographed by Adin Walker, The White Dress features a music and movement score that accentuates Jonathan’s odyssey to be free in their own skin.

Oscar at the Crown


It’s a musical. It’s a queer dance party. It’s a show with original music that’s immersive — meaning you get to take part as well. Oscar at the Crown posits that the apocalypse has come and gone, and here we all are in a bunker where all that’s survived is reality TV and a decidedly unorthodox master of ceremonies — the ever youthful and irreverent Oscar Wilde. Get your gear and glitter on. It’s time for a Wilde ride at 3 Dollar Bill.

Camp: Notes on Fashion

Ongoing through September 8

The Costume Institute’s spring 2019 exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art explores the origins of the camp aesthetic, and how it has evolved from a place of marginality to become an important influence on mainstream culture. Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay “Notes on ‘Camp’” provides the framework for the exhibition, which will examine how fashion designers have used their métier as a vehicle to engage with camp in a myriad of compelling, humorous, and sometimes incongruous ways.

Camp is defined as being “deliberately exaggerated and theatrical in style, typically for humorous effect.” It’s long been a term applied to a number of LGBTQ-related aesthetics — on stage, on screen, and off. This year, the Metropolitan Museum of Art is celebrating and exploring the influence of camp on fashion with the exhibition Camp: Notes on Fashion.

If that alone were not enough to tempt you, it will also be the theme of the May 6 Met Gala, co-chaired by fashion forces Lady Gaga, Alessandro Michele, Harry Styles, Serena Williams and Anna Wintour. According to the Met, “The Costume Institute’s spring 2019 exhibition will explore the origins of the camp aesthetic and how it has evolved from a place of marginality to become an important influence on mainstream culture.”

Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay Notes on ‘Camp’ provides a framework for the exhibition, which examines how fashion designers have used their métier as a vehicle to engage with camp in a myriad of compelling, humorous and sometimes incongruous ways.” Even if you can’t score a ticket to the gala, you’ll be able to take in the fabulous fashions on display.

Implicit Tensions: Mapplethorpe Now

Through January 5, 2020

Implicit Tensions: Mapplethorpe Now will show the groundbreaking work of gay photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. The prolific artist captured the images of famous folks like his friend Patti Smith, as well as striking self-portraits and images of the S&M scene that drew controversy during Mapplethorpe’s lifetime. This exhibition will also showcase artists who succeeded Robert Mapplethorpe, portraying self and/or the body with similar frankness and beauty. These artists will include Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Lyle Ashton Harris, Glenn Ligon, Catherine Opie, and Paul Mpagi Sepuya. This exhibition runs January 25-July 24, 2019, closes briefly, and reopens July 24, 2019-January 5, 2020 at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. General admission tickets include access to all exhibitions on view and daily 2pm guided tour.

Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus

Through August 4, Official opening date April 11th

Comedic icons Nathan Lane and Andrea Martin star in the original Broadway “sequel” to William Shakespeare’s epic tragedy. The two on-stage marvels portray servants tasked with the dreadful deed of post-war time cleanup. Written by Pulitzer Prize Finalist, Taylor Mac, and directed by five-time Tony Award winner, George C. Wolfe, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus will make you wonder “O why should wrath be mute and fury dumb?”. Very dumb indeed. Learn more

“Art after Stonewall”

April 21 — July 21

Art after Stonewall, timed with the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, is the first major exhibition to examine the impact of the LGBTQ civil-rights movement on the art world. Much has been written on the impact of the LGBTQ movement on American society and yet almost 50 years after Stonewall, key artists and their works of art are little known. This exhibition, which includes over 150 works of art and related materials, focuses on the work of openly LGBTQ artists like Nan Goldin, Holly Hughes, Robert Mapplethorpe, Tim Miller, Catherine Opie, and Andy Warhol, and considers as well the practices of such artists as Vito Acconci, Diane Arbus, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Lynda Benglis and Karen Finley in terms of their engagement with a newly emerging queer subculture.

The Donna Summer Musical

Through December 31

Told through the dramatic lens of her final concert, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical presents the complexities and conflicts the famed songwriter and singer faced in her meteoric rise and descent. The show features a score with more than 20 of Summer’s classic hits including “Love to Love You, Baby,” “Bad Girls” and “Hot Stuff.”

Want to get LGBTQ event notifications sent to your inbox weekly? Sign up for MetroEspresso.

Last modified: July 18, 2019