I LOVE a good live show - whether it's a Broadway musical, traveling circus, or rockin' cover band. The loud music, the artistry, the thrill... it's all SO much fun!! And its something that has been missing from my life since having kids. Most of these events are not exactly baby/kid friendly, and leaving 3 kids home with a sitter isn't exactly budget-friendly. If this struggle sounds all too familiar to you and you live in the NYC metro area, I've recently discovered a place and added it to my list of the best things to do with kids in NYC: the New Victory Theater!
New Victory Theater, in the heart of New York City's Times Square, has been devoted to presenting theater, dance, circus, opera and music from around the world to New York families since 1995. Ticket prices are a fraction of its neighboring Broadway theaters (I believe usually around $16-38 a seat), and yet you get the same quality shows set in an equally spectacular theater, with tons of added features specifically geared toward making their littlest audience members (and their grownups) feel welcomed. You'll be greeted by exuberant ushers and find family-friendly conveniences such as booster seats, stroller parking, free lockers, step stools at bathroom sinks, healthy concession snacks, and tons of games and activities before and after each show.
Last weekend, I received 2 comp tickets to check out their newest show, "Something" by Liberi Di Physical Theater, running March 31 - April 16. Always looking for fun one-on-one activities to do with my son, he was an easy choice as my plus one (daddy reluctantly stayed home with the babies).
"Something", a contemporary cirque show from Italy, starts off really quirky and upbeat - with vibrant colors and funky acrobatics and dancing in a big group. From there, each scene features a different performer(s). From dance and acrobatics to mid-air performance (a beautiful duet on a hoop and a girl rocking out on aerial silks - the latter of which I've usually seen performed more sensually, but this punk twist was really cool and totally worked!)
All acts were amazing and so completely different, it left me a wondering if there was any kind of plot. DIrector Davide Agostini explains the theme, "You can make every day extraordinary and find ‘something’ that makes you feel better." One scene features 4 silly guys flipping around a table playing poker, and another has a guy hanging for dear life from a hoop above a group of acrobatic animals trying to eat him! Eventually certain characters and props started intertwining but overall, no, there didn't seem to be any kind of grand story being told. But each scene was so entertaining in its own, it was just fine by me (also makes it easier for any kids who may doze in and out). It just added to the quirkiness of it all! And the music, oh the music! It took on a character of its own - it is REALLY catchy, no live orchestra, but I loved it!
There was a lot of humor woven into the acts - you were wow'd one moment with a jaw dropping stunt, and laughing out loud the next moment by their silly antics. The show and the theater are obviously marketed toward families, but I would say it's equally relevant and enjoyable for an adult as a child, and I would 100% recommend it for families with kids as well as for a date night!
One of the most awesome parts of New Vic being so family-friendly is that you don't feel as much pressure to have your kids on their best behavior. When they shout out excitedly in the middle of the act (as mine may or may not have done...), you won't feel the entire room is giving you the stink eye. HOORAY FOR THAT!!!
"Something" is 60 minutes long with no intermission and is suggested for ages 6 and above, but my 4 year old enjoyed it thoroughly, until he passed out hard half way through... He doesn't really nap anymore, but put him in a dark room or moving vehicle midday and it's game over. I'd personally say the show itself is appropriate for 3 or 4 years and up (assuming maturity and ability to be quiet and sit still), but you have to consider if your kids will be able to stay awake despite it being super exciting haha! They also have 5pm and 7pm show times on some nights, and even had an Autism-Friendly show on Sunday April 2!.
Disclaimer: Although I did receive tickets free of charge, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
I'm a NYC metro area mom blogger living in NJ with my Japanese husband & our 3 kids (twins plus 1), focusing on fun and honest product and travel reviews, saving moms time finding the best for their families! Find what you need in the menu bar or search section above!