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Wednesday, 02 March 2011 16:37

Al Hirschfeld's BROADWAY SCRAPBOOK on Display at New York Botanical Garden's 9th Annual Orchid Exhibition

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MARCH 5 – APRIL 25, 2011


From March 5 through April 25, 2011, The New York Botanical Garden 9th Annual Orchid Exhibition, “The Orchid Show: On Broadway,” will present the work of Al Hirschfeld in “Hirschfeld’s Broadway Scrapbook.”  Just across the Garden’s ground in the LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s Rondina and LoFaro Gallery, the complementary exhibition will feature more than 30 drawings, as well as posters, programs, and sketchbooks from the Al Hirschfeld Foundation that tell the history of the Great White Way as seen by its foremost chronicler.

Visitors will travel through time beginning with Eugene O’Neill’s classic Anna Christie in 1921 to Hairspray in 2002, with stops along the way at My Fair Lady, Gypsy, Funny Girl, Fiddler on the Roof, La Cage Aux Folles and Evita. Included are portraits of Broadway legends Stephen Sondheim, Arthur Miller, George and Ira Gershwin, Neil Simon, Carol Channing, Patti Lupone, Barbra Streisand, Julie Andrews, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and even a selection of Broadway shows with a botanical connection such as House of Flowers, The Grass Harp and The Effects of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds“Hirschfeld’s Broadway Scrapbook”  is curated by David Leopold of the Al Hirschfeld Foundation with consultation provided by Louise Kerz Hirschfeld.

“Hirschfeld’s Broadway Scrapbook” will mark the first New York City exhibition of the legendary artist’s celebrated theatre drawings since his death.

“How fitting it is that this exhibition is presented at The New York Botanical Garden,” says Louise Kerz Hirschfeld, President, The Al Hirschfeld Foundation. “While creating his vast personal history of theater, cinema, dance, and politics, Al Hirschfeld’s constant companions were a variety of plants that flourished in the enormous, sun-drenched windows that faced the tree-lined street of his Upper East Side atelier in Manhattan. To this day, a flowering cactus given to him by actress Dorothy Stickney in the 1950s still blossoms every December.”

“Like any experienced gardener, Hirschfeld knew that each season would bring fresh blooms, perennials such as Gypsy and All My Sons; specimens that like the dark such as Anna Christie and Rent; and others that need the (spot)light such as HairsprayEvita, and Funny Girl, and the inevitable withering and death of some of the less hardy varieties,” says David Leopold, Archivist, The Al Hirschfeld Foundation. “Think of this exhibition as a bouquet of some of Broadway’s most popular blossoms, or intricately produced arrangements that showcase the flora of 81 seasons of what was once known as the Main Stem.”

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ABOUT THE NEW YORK BOTANICAL GARDEN 9TH ANNUAL ORCHID EXHIBITION: From March 5 through April 25, 2011, the undeniable glamour and irresistible allure of orchids take center stage at The New York Botanical Garden in a dazzling display created by Tony award-winning set designer Scott Pask, image-maker Drew Hodges, and Botanical Garden curators. The result is must-see horticultural theater. The Orchid Show: On Broadway features iconic architectural elements from legendary theaters of the Great White Way dramatically interpreted with thousands of orchids in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. Just a short stroll across the Garden’s grounds in the Library building, a complementary exhibition, “Hirschfeld’s Broadway Scrapbook,” spotlights works by the American caricaturist whose whimsical drawings so captured audiences that a Broadway theater was named in his honor. On weekends, Broadway Cabaret performances highlight popular music from Broadway stages.

Combined with the art exhibition and live performances, The Orchid Show: On Broadway, the Botanical Garden’s ninth annual presentation of the nation’s largest and only curated orchid exhibition, which has been acclaimed as a “tour de force that leaves most visitors gasping with amazement and delight,” is a not-to-be-missed showcase for orchid enthusiasts and Broadway theater-lovers alike.

Principal Sponsors, Mr. and Mrs. Marvin H. Davidson

Founding Sponsor,  The Tiffany & Co. Foundation

Generous support also provided by the Karen Katen Foundation

Exhibitions in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory are made possible by the Estate of Enid A. Haupt.

Exhibitions in the Mertz Library are made possible by the LuEsther T. Mertz Charitable Trust.