BAM is America's oldest performing arts center and a leading presenter of the avant-garde. Since opening in 1861, it has presented the finest in performing arts. The renowned performers who have appeared at BAM include Isadora Duncan, Enrico Caruso, Sarah Bernhardt and Arturo Toscanini, and contemporary counterparts such as Pina Bausch, Merce Cunningham, Steve Reich and Philip Glass.

BAM continues to develop and present a unique roster of traditional and contemporary dance, theater, music, opera and film, placing particular emphasis on artists of international stature who have a cutting-edge artistic vision. Four theaters showcase the acclaimed Next Wave Festival for new work—BAM's fall flagship event focusing on artists probing new and emerging areas of the performing arts—as well as programs ranging from classical music to circus arts, from Shakespeare to African dance.

The four-screen BAM Rose Cinemas (BRC) opened in 1998 to screen alternative and independent films that might not otherwise be seen in Brooklyn. In 1999, BAMcinématek, the repertory program, was inaugurated to add retrospective screenings and festivals to the mix. BAMcinématek is a program for new and rarely seen contemporary work, a presenter of classic films from cinema history, and a platform for community groups, local screenings and festivals.


BAMfamily Overview                                                                                BAMfamily presents special programs for kids of all ages and their parents. BAMfamily programs include:

BAMkids Film Festival
Now in its 11th year, BAMkids Film Festival showcases the best in international children's film including many New York, US, and even world premieres. The Festival also includes Q&As with filmmakers, rock concerts, movie-making, and other fun activities during a weekend in the Spring.

BAMfamily Book Brunch
These events feature readings by award-winning authors plus live-music, kid-friendly food, a Q&A and book signing. Past Book Brunch authors have included Brian Selznick and Walter Dean Myers.

BAMfamily Concert Series
Concerts for the little people take place in BAM's Opera House or Harvey Theater and have featured Dan Zanes & Friends, Audra Rox, and The Toxic Muffin, among others. These lively shows encourage kids to dance, sing, and express themselves through music and lyrics. .


BAM Education is dedicated to providing inspiration and curriculum enrichment through the arts, presenting an exceptional and innovative series of performances, films and workshops to students every year. For most performances or films each class attends, BAM provides an in-school, pre-show preparation workshop and a teacher’s study guide.

Live Performances and Films

Through its presentations of live performances and films, BAM Education offers students and teachers the opportunity to connect with the world at large and to explore the issues that impact their lives through the arts.Residencies and Professional Development
BAM Education offers opportunities for extended engagement in the arts through several in-school, artist-in-residency programs—AfricanDanceBeat, AfricanMusicBeat, and Shakespeare Teaches Students. As we continue to support the integration of the arts into the school curriculum, we also offer a wide range of professional development workshops for teachers and administrators including the series Shakespeare Teaches Teachers. These programs directly address the New York State Learning Standards, especially for the Arts, English Language Arts, and Social Studies, the New York City English Language Arts Performance Standards, and the New York City Blueprints for Teaching and Learning in the Arts.After-School Programs
Free after-school programs—Young Critics, Young Film Critics, Dancing Into the Future and Arts & Justice—offer opportunities for extended engagement in the arts. All programs are tailored to meet city and state learning standards as part of BAM Education's continuing mission to support the integration of the arts into the school curriculum.Pre-Show Preparation Workshops and Teacher's Study Guides
The following support services and materials provide connections to the curriculum, the Learning Standards, the Blueprints for Teaching and Learning in the Arts, and students’ personal experiences.Pre-Show Preparation Workshops
Most classes attending a performance or film receives an in-school, pre-show preparation workshop. In these interactive workshops, BAM Education's extraordinary teaching artists provide essential context and behind-the-scenes information to enhance students' appreciation of what they will experience at BAM.

Teacher's Study Guides
Teachers receive a study guide for each performance or film. These materials are tailored to each program and relate to the Learning Standards and the Blueprints for Teaching and Learning in the Arts. Study guides typically include:

• Background information about the company, artists or film
• Historical and cultural context
• Curriculum connections
• Writing assignments
• Classroom activities
• Tools to foster analytical thinking