Programs: Calendar

First Friday! Bearded Barnes

Philadelphia’s most provocative cabaret ensemble, the Bearded Ladies, adds an innovative twist on First Friday! with the premiere of Bearded Barnes, an original performance created in response to the Barnes collection. The Bearded Ladies examine three fictitious Barnes docents as they lead museum-goers on an immersive musical tour of the collection. As the docents arrange and rearrange large empty frames whose contents are filled by their description and the audience's imagination, they negotiate the tensions between historical accuracy, the preservation of Barnes’s original intent, and their own passions. Their words are underscored by music—a three-piece band of accordion, clarinet and percussion. First surreptitiously, then gloriously, the docents begin moving as the paintings inspire them, shedding their layers of academic agita to join together in a full-out bacchanalian dance that Matisse—and perhaps even Barnes—would approve of. Features Bearded Ladies favorites Heath Allen, Kristen Bailey, John Jarboe, Kate Raines, and Mary Tuomanen.

Includes a short talk by Barnes Retail Operations Manager Julie Steiner—The Art of Absinthe: Hallucinations and the Queen of Poisons in the Barnes Collection.




First Friday! is sponsored by Macy’s

Friday, December 4
6–9 pm 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway $25; members free

Includes collection and exhibition access. Cocktails and light fare available for purchase. This event's menu includes oven-roasted tomato soup with herb oil and a grilled cheese skewer.

Reserve general admission or member tickets online or call 215.278.7200.

Free First Sunday

Free First Sunday: Pattern and Movement

The Barnes offers free admission and programming on the first Sunday of every month. Visitors are welcome to attend talks, performances, and hands-on activities throughout the day. Tickets are limited and cannot be reserved in advance; they are available on-site starting at 9 am. 

First Sundays, 10 am–5 pm; programming 1–4 pm

Free First Sunday, December 6 Theme: Pattern and Movement

1–4 pm Hands-on ArtSee Activities: Sightseeing
Imagination stations for family fun! Drop-in programs for all ages on Free First Sundays. ’Tis the season for seeing the sights; let the Barnes collection transport you to other countries. Draw with scissors as you cut out a Happy Birthday Matisse bag, create a travel poster of faraway lands, and design your own mode of transportation.

1:30–2:10 pm Performances by Kensington CAPA drumline and rhythmic dance troupe
Kensington High School for Creative and Performing Arts provides students with a rigorous academic program and comprehensive educational experiences in a safe, supportive learning environment that prepares students for postsecondary studies, careers, and opportunities in the fields of the expressive arts.

2–4 pm Storytime Sunday
Arty books and stories about design and nature for children of all ages.

2:15–2:35 pm Dance performance by BalletX
BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet, unites distinguished choreographers with world-class dancers to forge works of athleticism, emotion, and grace.

2:40–3:30 pm Yoga session with Pop Up Yoga Philly
Pop Up Yoga Philly doesn't have a studio; their yoga classes take place in iconic spots around Philadelphia and they partner with local businesses to bring yoga classes to all Philadelphians.


Free First Sundays is generously presented by PECO.





Free tickets can be obtained on-site at the Barnes Foundation beginning at 9 am. Advance reservations are not available for Free First Sundays.

This offer is limited to tickets for two adults and two children per transaction. Tickets are limited and available on a first come-first served basis.

Tickets include access to the Collection gallery, special exhibition and any programming taking place that day.

The Barnes Foundation and PECO look forward to welcoming you to Free First Sundays!

Sunday, December 6
1–4 pm 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway Free

Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra

Through Oceans of Time: Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra

Jeri Lynne Johnson, the founder and music director of the Black Pearl Chamber Orchestra, one of the country’s most diverse ensembles, leads the chamber group in a riveting, innovative performance that combines classical and contemporary music, including Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 and Stravinsky's Dumbarton Oaks. A performance by young musicians from the Settlement Music School's Trowbridge Chamber Orchestra opens the evening.

6pm: doors open
6:30-7:30pm live music
7:30-7:45pm intermission
7:45-8:30pm live music

Saturday, December 19
6–9 pm 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway $30; members $24

Collection and exhibition access included. Cocktails and light fare available for purchase. This event's menu includes arugula salad with thyme whipped mascarpone, aged balsamic, fig pearls, and crispy prosciutto or beet chips.

Reserve online or call 215.278.7200.