This Weekend: NYBG Honors History’s Groundbreakers

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Bird Walk — 11 a.m.
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
The diverse habitats of the Botanical Garden offer visitors a chance to see dozens of species of birds throughout the year. Bring your binoculars and walk the Garden grounds with an expert to learn about bird-friendly habitats, migrating species, and birds that make a permanent home at the Garden. Also look out for butterflies looking for nectar in the Garden’s flowers.

Film Screening: Yours for a Song: The Women of Tin Pan Alley — 11 a.m.
In the Ross Hall
Many popular music standards of the Tin Pan Alley era (1920–49) were written by women, including Dorothy Fields, Kay Swift, Dana Suesse, and Ann Ronell, who were among the most influential songwriters of the time. This PBS documentary includes archival footage, motion picture clips, and rarely seen photographs, as well as performance clips of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and Perry Como.

Azalea Garden Tour — 12:30 p.m.
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Join us for a guided tour of the 11-acre site that offers an encyclopedic collection of the world’s azaleas planted along a broad hillside punctuated by rock outcrops and shaded by mature native trees.

Opening Weekend Lecture with Curator Sam Watters: Picturing a Beautiful America — 1 p.m.
In the Ross Hall
As guardians of home and community, women in 1900 launched the Garden Beautiful movement, a response to the environmental wreckage of the industrial Gilded Age. Confident that new landscape design and horticulture could green America back to beauty, they founded garden clubs and hired professional photographers to publicize their hopeful message. With spectacular colored slides not seen since 1930, Sam Watters presents a virtual tour of estate gardens, East and West, as seen through the eyes and lenses of three pioneering photojournalists who used new camera technologies and the rise of photo-editorials in national magazines to define and interpret the new American garden. Non-Member $30/Member $5, Advance tickets recommended.

Historian Sam Watters writes and lectures about American house and garden culture, with a particular focus on the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His books include Houses of Los Angeles, 1885-1935 and Gardens for a Beautiful America, 1895-1935. Mr. Watters is curator of Gardens for a Beautiful America: The Women Who Photographed Them, on view at the LuEsther T. Mertz Library.

Native Plant Garden Tour — 2:30 p.m.
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Join a tour guide for an insider’s view of the newly designed Native Plant Garden. Enjoy a mosaic of nearly 100,000 native trees, wildflowers, ferns and grasses designed to flourish in every season.

From Ragtime to Jazz: The Roots of Pop — 3:30 p.m.
In the Ross Hall
Music from the period of Groundbreakers—ragtime, jazz, Broadway, and beyond to Hollywood—had a great impact on American culture. Enjoy a variety of styles in live performances by a trio of artists, including musical producer, pianist, and historian Terry Waldo, featuring the works of Scott Joplin, Eubie Blake, Irving Berlin, and Tin Pan Alley composers such as George Gershwin, George M. Cohan, and Dorothy Fields.
About the artists:

Terry Waldo is a virtuoso ragtime, stride, and blues pianist, as well as a vocalist and composer. The protégé of the legendary Eubie Blake, he has produced over 50 albums while performing throughout the world, and is currently teaching courses on early jazz and ragtime piano for Jazz at Lincoln Center. His book, This is Ragtime, is now available with a new introduction by Wynton Marsalis. He regularly performs in New York at several prestigious venues.

Equally at home as both leader and sideman, Dan Levinson’s roster of musical associates includes Mel Tormé, Wynton Marsalis, Dick Hyman, and Leon Redbone. He has been featured on over 100 albums, producing nine of his own, and can be heard on the soundtracks to Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator and the Grammy Award-winning HBO television series Boardwalk Empire—to name only two.

Tamar Korn, Brooklyn-based singer for The Brain Cloud, plays a repertoire steeped in traditional New Orleans jazz, western swing, and American roots music. Skilled in both lyrical and “instrumental” vocals, she has toured across North America, Europe, Asia, and the Caribbean.

Sunday, May 18

Groundbreakers Mrs. Rockefeller's Garden Moon Gate

Garden Photography Encounters — 10 a.m.6 p.m.
In the Conservatory Courtyard
Learn how to compose a beautiful image by honing important elements of design and style used by the photographers featured in the exhibition.

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