15 August 2022
By Ellie Palmer
This September, 12 pianos will be placed around the San Francisco Botanical Garden - where anyone is invited to play and listen
Sunset Piano and San Francisco Botanical Garden are pairing up to transform the garden into an alfresco performance space open to any and all pianists.
It will be the seventh time that this initiative, called Flower Piano, has taken place at the gardens.
Taking place from 16-20 September in San Francisco, participants are invited to explore the garden’s global living plant collections as they seek out the 12 pianos spread out across the 55-acre living museum. At each of the pianos, there will be scheduled professional performances, open play time for participants, and community partner performances – reflecting a range of genres, ages, and cultures.
“Flower Piano is located at that magical intersection of music and nature,” says Dean Mermell, co-founder, together with Mauro Ffortissimo, of event partner Sunset Piano. “It’s a uniquely safe outdoor space where we can be our best as humans, enjoying the Bay Area’s finest musicians in the city’s most beautiful setting.”
New this year is the opening event, Fall and Fly, on Wednesday September 14 from 5– 6:30pm, where a commissioned work created for 12 grand pianos will be performed on the Garden’s Great Meadow. San Francisco-based composer Benjamin Gribble has written Fall and Fly, an experimental work in three movements, exploring the textures of a 12-piano choir. Special guest speakers, writers, and poets will contextualize the evening with themes of renewal and regrowth.
More about Flower Piano
Flower Piano is a musical event and attraction that provides open access to music and pianos within the outdoor environment of San Francisco Botanical Garden. Free for all San Franciscans, for families receiving SNAP or CalFresh benefits, and for everyone else following $3-$25 general admission, Flower Piano is accessible for all.
Find out more here.
Images courtesy of San Francisco Botanical Garden.