Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts Returns With Free, Innovative Events

Prepare for the unexpected! Celebrate the ground-breaking artistry of local and international music, dance, and aerial magic performances and installations this summer as the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA) returns Thursday night.

Occurring every two years in Philadelphia, PIFA is a celebration of the arts presented by the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. The festival runs from May 31 through June 10 and includes works by Taylor Mac, Elizabeth Streb, Bassem Youssef and many others.

If you want to see some of the most exciting and innovative acts from around the world, but don’t want to spend too much, we’ve got you covered.

Here are some of the free events offered from PIFA this year:


Monday, June 4 at 8 p.m.

The Kimmel Center will be hosting one of the hottest live bands in town with host Kevin Ngo leading the dancing for visitors on the dance floor. On Monday, Cuban percussionist Arturo Stable will lead the celebration of Cuban music featuring The La NOCHE Band, along with two special guest Cuban singers and musicians, Ariacne Trujillo Durnad and YUSA!

Sittin’ In: Live Sessions

Wednesday, June 6 at 9 p.m.

This production introduces audience to new artists from various musical genres. The unpredictability of “Sittin’ In” is something that PIFA embraces and loves to show. Audiences can expect to experience perfectly tuned sets along with improvised shows from people who have never collaborated together prior to the production. “Sittin’ In” is meant for an informal club-like setting and features sets from the hottest DJs around Philadelphia.

Rare Essence, Washington's premier Go-Go band for many decades will be headlining “Sittin’ In” Wednesday. The group attracts fans from multiple generations and has produced music with some of the biggest names in the industry including Wale, Run DMC, LL Cool J, French Montana and many more.

Street Fair

Saturday, June 9 at 11 a.m.

The grand finale of the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts is a day-long street fair that takes place from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m on seven blocks of Broad Street between City Hall and South Street. This block party will feature performances, interactive experiences and popular food vendors from around the country.

Broad Street will close Friday, June 8, and reopen Sunday, June 10. For more information on rides, performances, and street closures, click here.

PIFA also hosts many other affordable and interesting events throughout the celebration and those can be found on their website.

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