San Francisco Flower Piano

Jenna Lane/KCBS

Annual Flower Piano Festival Returns To SF Botanical Garden

Jenna Lane
July 11, 2019 - 2:51 pm

San Francisco Flower Piano
Jenna Lane/KCBS
SAN FRANCISCO — It has become a hallmark of summer in the city, attracting amateur and professional musicians alike: Flower Piano in San Francisco’s Botanical Garden.

Keeping a dozen pianos tuned in the fog that envelops Golden Gate Park in July is no small feat. One of the founders of Flower Piano, Dean Mermell, said it’s worth the constant effort to lure the city’s hidden talent out of the living rooms where too many pianos gather dust.

“Maybe you’ve had your family album on it for the last five years but have never played it,” Mermell said. “All of a sudden, here’s a piano out under a tree, and there’s a hawk yelling in the tree at you because he doesn’t like what you’re playing. And there’s a bunch of people around you who know your obscure piece of music. Magical things happen all the time.”

The chance to play outdoors is what keeps 13-year-old Oscar Cervarich coming back every year.

“It’s kind of nice just to be in the fog,” he said. “But also the amount of people that can come. Sometimes in a room you’re limited to a certain amount of people, but here it’s just as many as you can get and it’s really fun.”

The interactive music festival runs through July 22. A full schedule of performances and programs, as well as links for advance ticket purchase to Flower Piano at Night and Flower Piano at Sunset, is available at sfbg.org/flowerpiano.