Festival Schedule

May 2-5: Rain or shine!

Read the ARTS FIRST Festival guide online
Here's the official ARTS FIRST
map

pf-js

Festival Highlight

4-5:30 PM Harvard Arts Medal Ceremony honoring poet Tracy K. Smith '94
Join a celebration of U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith ’94, the 2019 Harvard Arts Medal recipient, in conversation with radio and TV journalist Callie Crossley NF ’83, IOP ’02. Professor Jorie Graham welcomes the audience. President Lawrence S. Bacow presents the medal.
Free tickets and more information here.
Agassiz Theatre, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.

Other Thursday Events

3 PM Foundations of Modern Jazz Concert
This concert focuses on the Arará music tradition and key elements of West African music explored in the course Music 142 with students of Yosvany Terry, Senior Lecturer on Music.
Holden Chapel, Harvard Yard
5-7 PM VES Open Studios
Five floors of work from Visual and Environmental Studies studio art and photography courses.
Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, 24 Quincy St.
6 PM The Seagull
A modern, site-specific adaptation of Chekhov's drama. Directed by Eli Zuzovsky '21.
Tercentenary Theatre, Harvard Yard
7:30 PM Talk on Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine
Discussion with MCA Chicago curator Naomi Beckwith, director Peter Sellars '81, composer Tyshawn Sorey and vocalist Julia Bullock. In collaboration with Harvard Department of Music and International Contemporary Ensemble, founded by Claire Chase, Senior Lecturer on Music.
Level 3 Bookshop, Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, 24 Quincy St.
7 PM From Behind Barbed Wire: A Holocaust Remembrance Concert
The Harvard College Opera Society observes Yom HaShoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, with works written by Jewish composers during the Holocaust, including Viktor Ullmann, Gideon Klein, Hannah Szenes, Ilse Weber and Adolf Strauss. Free.
Paine Hall, 3 Oxford St.
7 PM Cruising Altitude: The First-Year Musical
Enjoy a high-stakes comedy, set 35,000 feet in the air, about losing yourself in relationships, living in the moment and pursuing passions at all costs. Directed by Aviva Ramirez '22.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Agassiz Theatre, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.
7:30 PM The Danube
Theater, Dance & Media presents a love story by María Irene Fornés, set against the backdrop of war. Directed by Morgan Green.
Free tickets: tdm.fas.harvard.edu
Farkas Hall, 10–12 Holyoke St.

 

See also

Student Public Art Projects
Museums & Galleries | Art in the Houses | Other Exhibitions

Festival Highlights

 
5:30–7 PM Harvard Jazz Bands led by Yosvany Terry, with guest saxophonist Don Braden '85
The Harvard Jazz Bands have traveled the world with Grammy-nominated saxophonist Yosvany Terry, Senior Lecturer on Music and director of Harvard Jazz Ensembles, and Mark Olson, director of Harvard Univeristy Band and Wind Ensemble. Saxophonist and composer Don Braden '85, lauded by the New York Times as “brilliant and assured,” is the guest artist. Snacks and beverages will be available for purchase. All ages welcome.
Science Center Plaza Tent
8 PM Sea Symphony: A Celebration of Walt Whitman
Join 180 students from Radcliffe Choral Society, Harvard Glee Club and Harvard-Radcliffe Collegium Musicum performing Ralph Vaughan Williams’ symphony for orchestra and chorus set to Whitman’s Leaves of Grass. The concert includes readings of Whitman's poems honoring the bicentennial of his birth.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Sanders Theatre
10 PM Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine
The Fromm Players at Harvard reimagine the life of Josephine Baker. Directed by Peter Sellars ‘81 and featuring soprano Julia Bullock, with original music by Tyshawn Sorey and texts by Claudia Rankine. With the International Contemporary Ensemble, founded by Claire Chase, Senior Lecturer on Music.
This event is free; tickets required through Loeb Drama Center Box Office: americanrepertorytheater.org
OBERON, 2 Arrow Street

Other Friday Events

12 PM Opening Event for A Pine in the Sand
Isaac Stein GSD '20 and Maggie Tsang GSD '19 illustrate environmental change and evolution through natural processes. More information.
Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.
12:30 PM Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology Highlights Tour
View Native American totem poles, life-size casts of Maya monuments and Wiyohpiyata: Lakota Images of the Contested West featuring 19th-century warrior art.
Free with museum admission or Harvard ID. 45 minutes.
Peabody Museum, 11 Divinity Ave.
1:30 PM On Pointe: Transforming the Boston Ballet in Modern Times
Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen, Executive Director Max Hodges '03, MBA '10, and other alums discuss arts leadership in a rapidly changing world. More information.
Klarman Hall, Harvard Business School, Soldiers Field Road, Boston
2 PM Chamber Music Concert: Schubert
Students of Music 175, a course by Senior Lecturer on Music Federico Cortese, perform works by Schubert.
Holden Chapel, Harvard Yard
2 PM SpaceWoman of the Underground
Ground-Breaking: Artist Christine Zuercher attempts to dig a hole to the other side of the planet.
South Lawn, Memorial Hall
3:30 PM The Seagull
A modern, site-specific adaptation of Chekhov's drama. Directed by Eli Zuzovsky '21.
Tercentenary Theatre, Harvard Yard
5-7 PM Harvardwood ARTS FIRST Mixer
Celebrate 20 years of Harvardwood. For students and alums interested in arts and entertainment.
Charlie's Kitchen, 10 Eliot St.
5 PM The Art of the Ghazal
Experience the emotional journey of Sufi music and South Asian poetry with musician Ali Sethi '06 and Professor Ali Asani '77. More information.
Fong Auditorium, Boylston Hall
5-7 PM VES Senior Thesis Exhibition Reception
Undergraduate senior students present their work as the capstone experience in the department.
Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, 24 Quincy St.
6-7:30 PM Look Up, Allston! and Mural Unveiling
Celebrate the end of the K–12 mentoring semester with local students' presentations.
Harvard Ed Portal, 224 Western Ave., Allston
6-9 PM Art in Print Gallery Show and Reception
Join Zone 3 for a night of mixing and mingling with the artists of your favorite Art in Print pieces! Zone 3 will be hosting a gallery and reception showcasing the newsprint program that has reimagined how public art is presented by making limited-edition prints available for 25 cents throughout newspaper bins along Western Ave in Allston. Grab a drink, browse the collection of sold-out posters and see the reveal of Volume 3! More information.
Zone 3, 267 Western Ave, Allston
6-9 PM Made in Adams, with Love
See artwork by resident and non-resident artists.
The Art Space at 26 Plympton St.
6:30-9 PM Opening Reception for Art, Minorities and Social Change: Young Iranian Artists Sharing Their Visions of Social Change through Art
SoArt (Social Art) is an organization that brings together Young Iranian artists, and the way they share their vision of social change through art. Works from 50 Iranian artists will be on display May 3-August 15 in the CGIS South Concourse. More information.
CGIS South Concourse, 1730 Cambridge St.
7 PM Cruising Altitude: The First-Year Musical
Enjoy a high-stakes musical, set 35,000 feet in the air, about losing yourself in relationships, living in the moment and pursuing passions at all costs. Directed by Aviva Ramirez '22.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Agassiz Theatre, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.
7-10 PM VES Film/Video and Animation Screenings
Students present animation, video and film, including thesis works.
Level B, Carpenter Center, 24 Quincy St.
7:30 PM The Danube
Theater, Dance & Media presents a love story by María Irene Fornés, set against the backdrop of war. Directed by Morgan Green.
Free tickets: tdm.fas.harvard.edu
Farkas Hall, 10-12 Holyoke St.
7:30 PM The Diary of Anne Frank
An educational production of the Pulitzer- and Tony-winning theatrical adaptation of the book. Directed by Gregory Lipson '20. Reserve free tickets online.
Loeb Experimental Theater, 64 Brattle St.

See also

Student Public Art Projects
Museums & Galleries | Art in the Houses | Other Exhibitions

Performance Fair Opening Events & Other Highlights 

 
11 AM–
12:30 PM
A Triple-Header: THUD, CityStep and Harvard Pops Orchestra
The Harvard Undergraduate Drummers and CityStep team up for a cypher-like jam session where the beats are rolling to get you on your feet (11–11:45 AM). Then the Pops present music from silent films, Legend of Zelda and Star Wars. (May the Fourth be with you!) Plus a sing-along (11:45 AM–12:30 PM).
Science Center Plaza
12:30 PM Performance Fair Kickoff
The Harvard University Band kicks off the Performance Fair with crowd-pleasing anthems. The joy and jocularity of this popular student band offer a big and boisterous ARTS FIRST welcome.
Science Center Plaza
5–5:30 PM World Tea Ceremony
The Graduate School of Design World Tea Club and Dudley World Music Ensemble close the Performance Fair with a tea ceremony including global flavors and music. Arrive thirsty.
Science Center Plaza Tent
8 PM

Kuumba Singers of Harvard College, 49th Annual Dean Archie C. Epps Spring Concert
Celebrating Black creativity and spirituality, this talented choral group uses music to foster joy and community. Sheldon Reid ’96 conducts.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Sanders Theatre

Featured Festival Events

Performance Fair | 1-5 PM

11 locations! Over 100 performances! All free! See full listings page.
In & Around Harvard Yard

Make Art Stations | 1-5 PM

On the Plaza and in the Yard. See full listings page.

Other Saturday Events

11 AM Student-Led Tours of Harvard Art Museums
Unique, thematic tours of the collection. Meet at the digital signs by the Admissions Desk.
Harvard Art Museums, 32 Quincy St.
11 AM-
2 PM 
Letterpress Printing Open House
Visit the Bow & Arrow Press for letterpress demonstrations and create your own print.
Adams House B-Entry, 22 Bow St.
11 AM &
12 PM
Sunken Garden Children’s Theater
Twisted fairytales and wacky dancing. Suitable for children of all ages. Each show 20 minutes.
Sunken Garden, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St. (Rain location: Boylston Hall 105, Harvard Yard)
12 PM Harvard College Children's Stories Read Aloud
Undergraduates read their original children's books.
Dudley Plaza, outside Lehman Hall, Harvard Yard
1-5:30 PM 24th Annual Harvard University Pow Wow
Annual celebration of indigenous cultures.
hunap.harvard.edu/harvard-powwow
Lesley University's Brattle Lawn, 99 Brattle St.
1-4 PM Wash: An Interactive Ritual
Let your hands speak. Let your hands listen. Let your hands hold.
Dudley House Common Room, Lehman Hall
1-2:30 PM **CANCELED** Poetry of Nature | Nature of Poetry
Professor Elisa New hosts readings and chats with poets and poetry lovers highlighting the awesome power of nature. Presented by the Harvard Office for Sustainability and the OFA.
Fong Auditorium, Boylston Hall
1 PM &
4 PM
SpaceWoman of the Underground
Excavation: Artist Christine Zuercher attempts to dig a hole to the other side of the planet.
South Lawn, Memorial Hall
1 PM Electra
An outdoor staging of Sophocles' tragic drama. Directed by Isaiah Michalski '21. 90 minutes.
Sever Quad, Harvard Yard
1-4 PM Western Ave. Arts Walk
Departures on the hour
Discover public art treasures of north Allston-Brighton with student guides. Contact with accessibility questions: 617.496.5022. RSVP online.
Harvard Ed Portal, 224 Western Ave., Allston
2 PM Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology Highlights Tour
View Native American totem poles, life-size casts of Maya monuments and Wiyohpiyata: Lakota Images of the Contested West featuring 19th-century warrior art.
Free with museum admission or Harvard ID. 45 minutes.
Peabody Museum, 11 Divinity Ave.
2 PM &
7:30 PM
The Danube
Theater, Dance & Media presents a love story by María Irene Fornés.
Free tickets: tdm.fas.harvard.edu
Farkas Hall, 10-12 Holyoke St.
3 PM &
8:30 PM
Cruising Altitude: The First-Year Musical
A musical comedy set 35,000 feet in the air.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Agassiz Theatre, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.
3-6 PM Ice Cream Social
Join the Harvard i-lab for ice cream and entertainment. The i-lab will be serving up scoops while pianist Phil Greenwald plays favorite family-friendly singalong rock tunes. No RSVPs needed, just come on by for afternoon fun, rain or shine!
Harvard i-lab, Batten Hall, 125 Western Ave., Allston
4 PM The Diary of Anne Frank
An educational production of the Pulitzer- and Tony-winning theatrical adaptation of the book. Directed by Gregory Lipson '20. Reserve free tickets online.
Loeb Experimental Theater, 64 Brattle St.
4-6 PM Kirkland House Gallery Show
Visual artwork by Kirkland House students.
Kirkland House, Senior Common Room, Entryway A, 95 Dunster St.
5-7 PM The Bauhaus Studio Exhibition Reception
View projects from VES 119: The Bauhaus Studio. More information.
Harvard Ed Portal, 224 Western Ave. & ArtLab, 140 N. Harvard St.
5-7 PM Artist Demonstrations
Preview artworks on view for the Ceramics Program’s Spring Show and Sale (May 9–12) and watch seasoned artists demonstrate throwing on the potter’s wheel and sculpting with clay.
OFA Ceramics Program, 224 Western Ave., Allston
6-9 PM Drinking and Drawing
Everyone's favorite art-making sessions are back for a special Saturday edition of Drinking and Drawing at Zone 3. Join Allston's own painter, illustrator and Zone 3 muralist Pete Cosmos, for doodling, drinks and creative inspiration. RSVP online.
Zone 3, 267 Western Ave, Allston
6 PM The Seagull
A modern, site-specific adaptation of Chekhov's drama. Directed by Eli Zuzovsky '21.
Tercentenary Theatre, Harvard Yard
7-10 PM VES Film/Video and Animation Screenings
Students present animation, video and film, including thesis works.
Level B, Carpenter Center, 24 Quincy St.
7:30 PM Dudley World Music Ensemble Spring Concert
An international collective of graduate students performs works from around the globe.
Dudley House Dining Hall, Lehman Hall, Harvard Yard
8 PM Mozart and his Bloch-mates 
Mozart Society Orchestra performs works by Boyce, Chopin, Bloch, and Mozart. Ryan Zhang and Benjamin P. Wenzelberg, music directors.
Paine Hall, 3 Oxford St.
 

See also

Student Public Art Projects
Museums & Galleries | Art in the Houses | Other Exhibitions

Festival Highlights

11 AM–
12:30 PM
Beyond Borders
Uniting their art forms, Silkroad artists, Parker Quartet (Blodgett Artists-in-Residence, Harvard Department of Music) and Brattle Street Chamber Players of Harvard College team up for a bold and borderless concert featuring more than a dozen musicians in a one-of-a-kind experience that reminds us of the power of inclusivity, curiosity, listening and intergenerational collaboration.
Harvard Commons, Smith Campus Center
3 PM Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture Note location change to Science Center Plaza Tent. 
Think you know the 1812 Overture? Wait until you hear it performed in the classic Harvard/Lowell House tradition: with kazoos! Better yet, join the music in this participatory rendition of Tchaikovsky’s famous victory celebration.
Science Center Plaza Tent
7–
8:30 PM
The Covenant of Love: The Poetry, Music and Spirituality of South Asian Muslim Cultures
Professor Ali Asani ’77, pop star Ali Sethi ’06 and Grammywinning producer Noah Georgeson share the lyrical consciousness of legendary South Asian mystic poets through music and conversation. Central to the performance are the transformative powers of love, the primordial link that connects the divine to all of creation.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Sanders Theatre
 

Other Sunday Events

10 AM- 3 PM Y2Y through Art
Artworks that foster awareness and break down stereotypes surrounding youth homelessness.
Y2Y Harvard Square, 1 Church St. Basement
(press the Y2Y buzzer button for entry)
11:30 AM The Seagull CANCELED
A modern, site-specific adaptation of Chekhov's drama. Directed by Eli Zuzovsky '21.
Tercentenary Theatre, Harvard Yard
12 PM Cruising Altitude: The First-Year Musical
A musical comedy set 35,000 feet in the air.
Tickets: boxoffice.harvard.edu
Agassiz Theatre, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St.
12 PM &
1 PM
Sunken Garden Children’s Theater
Twisted fairytales and wacky dancing. Suitable for children of all ages. Each show 20 minutes.
Sunken Garden, Radcliffe Yard, 10 Garden St. (Rain location: Boylston Hall 105, Harvard Yard)
2-4 PM Materials Lab Workshop: Fancy Moves – Make Paper Dance!
Drop in for Bauhaus-inspired paper experiments and fashion your own festive hat.
Harvard Art Museums, Lower Level, 32 Quincy St.
2 PM Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology Highlights Tour
View Native American totem poles, life-size casts of Maya monuments and Wiyohpiyata: Lakota Images of the Contested West featuring 19th-century warrior art.
Free with museum admission or Harvard ID. 45 minutes.
Peabody Museum, 11 Divinity Ave.
2 PM A Celebration of Art and Writing
Listen to student writers from The Harvard Advocate read from their work.
Harvard Advocate, 21 South St.
2 PM Holden Voice Program Spring Recital
Student soloists sing Schumann, Sondheim and more.
Holden Chapel, Harvard Yard
4 PM Organ Recital by Carson Cooman
The composer-in-residence offers a concert of modern and contemporary works.
The Memorial Church Sanctuary, Harvard Yard
4 PM &
5 PM
Ramp It Up: Bauhaus for the 21st Century
A hybrid dance-fashion runway concert inspired by design principles from the Bauhaus.
Prescott St. Lawn, between Harvard Art Museums and Carpenter Center
5 PM From Underground
BlackCAST (Black Community and Student Theater), TEATRO! (Latinx Theater Club) and ASAP (Asian Student Arts Project) celebrate identity and art.
Lowell Lecture Hall, 17 Kirkland St.
5 PM Myrtle
Playful collaborative concert led by songwriters Claire Dickson '19 and Camila Ortiz '19. Additional performers: Gabe Fox-Peck '19, keys; Ian Askew '19, drums; Magdalena Abrego (Berklee '15), guitar; Isa Haro '21, Anselm Kizza-Besigye '21, Liat Rubin '19, Hannah Kates '18, movement
Harvard Commons, Smith Campus Center
6 PM Harvard College Game Developers Showcase
Play new games by artists, musicians, storytellers, computer scientists and more.
Science Center 113
7 PM An Evening with Sky Hopinka
Ethnopoetics with the Radcliffe Institute-Film Study Center Fellow.
Tickets available at door.
Harvard Film Archive, Carpenter Center, 24 Quincy St.
 

See also

Student Public Art Projects
Museums & Galleries | Art in the Houses | Other Exhibitions