Summer Events at the MFA

Here's what's coming up at the MFA.


Photo by Connor Sumner

Make no mistake, the art at the Museum of Fine Arts is the star, and this summer, a rare copy of the Magna Carta will be the must-see attraction. That said, summer also brings a new season of entertainment to the MFA, from the return of outdoor concerts, to film series, to special lectures and courses.

Here are some of the events you can feast on at the MFA this summer.

— Concerts —

Elaine and Jerome Rosenfeld Concerts in the Courtyard

Not to be confused with Concerts in the Courtyard at the Boston Public Library, the MFA’s concert series takes place in the beautiful Calderwood Courtyard in the evenings, bringing you “music under the stars.” Since seating is limited, the MFA recommends bringing your own lawn chairs or blankets. $30 tickets.

(All Wednesdays 7:30-9:30 p.m.)

Dom Flemons, July 2
Hazmat Modine, July 9
Veronica Robles, Los Sugar Kings, July 23
Noura Mint Seymali, July 30
Patty Larkin, August 6
Hot Club of Cowtown, August 13
Sierra Hull, August 14
Debo Band, August 20
David Maxwell and Maximum Blues, August 27

More info

Sound Bites: Nancy Lee Clark Concert Series

On second Thursdays of the month, you can sample “sound bites” of classical, folk, and world music in the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art. With $25 regular admission to the MFA.

Summer Lineup
(All Thursdays 6-8 p.m.)

KOEK, June 12
StarStuff Trio: Chamber Jazz, July 10
Animal Hospital, Andrew Tomasello, August 14

More info

An Evening with Danilo Pérez

The renowned Panamanian pianist and composer will speak about his background and perform with his band, the Panama 500, for one of several featured lectures and courses happening at the MFA this summer. Pérez, a UNESCO Artist for Peace, teaches at Berklee and the New England Conservatory.

$30 tickets, Thursday, June 26, 7:30-9 p.m., more info.

— Films —

The Limitless Possibilities of Black and White

From Raging Bull to Much Ado About Nothing, this series of screenings looks at 10 directors from 1967 to the present who made conscious choices to use black and white. Who needs technicolor when you can have noir?

$11 tickets, various showings June 4-22, details.

Enchanting New Cinema from Hong Kong

Six films comprise this series of movies from Hong Kong, including Unbeatable, a sports drama about a former MMA champion who becomes involved in the lives of a single mother and aspiring fighter, and Sometimes Naive, in which a filmmaker is sentenced to community service and must help young students make a short film.

$11 tickets, various showings June 12-June 22, details.

Alumbrones and Secundaria

Two films showing at the MFA this month look at arts and life in Cuba. In Alumbrones, we meet 12 artists working in Havana, who share their relationship with the place they call home. Secundaria follows a high school class in Cuba’s world-famous National Ballet School. For these young dancers, the craft is not only a passion or hobby, but a means to escape poverty. Both in Spanish with English subtitles.

Alumbrones: $11, Saturday, June 14, 3-4:15 p.m., more info, trailer.
Secundaria: $11, Wednesday, June 18, 7:30-9:10 p.m., more info, trailer.

16th Annual Roxbury International Film Festival

The largest New England film festival that celebrates films focusing on people of color takes place the last week of June. Films showing include The Fade, about four barbers from around the world; Escapement, a story about three generations of African-American men who connect through jazz; and Lift, which stars Kerry Washington as an expert shoplifter in Boston who steals the best outfits for herself and her friends—scandal!

$8-15, various showings June 25-29, details.

19th Annual Boston French Film Festival

Parlez-vous français? If not, no worries. All the films in the Boston French Festival come with subtitles in English. The lineup includes a variety of genres from drama to comedy to documentary and animation, with titles like Rendez-vous of Déjà Vu and Love Is the Perfect Crime.

$8+ tickets, various showings July 10-27, details.


Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave., Boston, 617-267-9300,

Update, 6/20/2014, 9 a.m.: Added newly announced lineup for Boston French Film Festival.

Want more summer? Of course you do.

Check out our June cover story, “Summer in the City.”

Plus: more summer series at local venues.