About Us

The Riverside Theatre

The Riverside Theatre presents a diverse range of programming, that includes cutting edge choreography in our dance festival, heart wrenching documentaries like Congo: Red Rubber, White King, Black Death and the enchanting theatrical Orisha Tales. Bring your entire family for the NY Family Arts Festival, let your kids explore their creativity and talents in our Youth Theatre or visit one of our exhibits.

You will find as many as 120 annual performances of dance, music and drama to choose from. We want to engage, educate, and inspire you. Whether you want to attend original dance productions, film premieres, musicals, plays or volunteer as an usher, The Riverside Theatre welcomes you.


Founded on the belief that the arts can be a transforming power in peoples' lives, the Theatre has presented a diverse range of programming including original dance productions, film premieres, musicals, and plays. Since its founding in 1960, the Theatre has become well known for exposing audiences to arts from many cultures, and to supporting emerging artists of all disciplines.

From 1964 to 1984, the world-renowned Riverside Dance Festival had a profound impact on the direction and development of modern dance in New York City. As a major presenter of dance, the Theatre of The Riverside Church played host to countless emerging dancers and dance companies who went on to become innovators in the modern dance world. During the 1981 season the Festival hosted 60 performance groups, from Alvin Ailey to DanceBrazil, serving approximately 30,000 people from the New York community. Theatre groups such as La Familia, created through our prison ministry, brought provocative works like ShortEyes and others.