met_logo2.jpgEvent Time: 1:00-5:00 p.m. Location: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street, Manhattan New York, N.Y. - The Metropolitan Museum of Art will host Senses of Springtime-a free family festival celebrating the spring season and the Museum's collections of works of art from the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia and the Ancient Near East-on Sunday, April 28, from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. The festival is part of a growing roster of multigenerational programs presented by the Museum's Multicultural Audience Development Initiative and the Museum's Education Department to connect families with different cultural traditions from across the world. Activities will include music and dance performances, storytelling, art-making activities, and a unique multi-sensory tour of the Museum's galleries. Senses of Springtime is made possible in part by the Great Circle Foundation. The programs are presented by The Metropolitan Museum of Art in consultation with Alwan for the Arts. Opening Ceremony The festivities will begin in the Museum's Great Hall at 1:00 p.m. with a procession and performance of traditional dance by dancers from Nritya Saagaram Dance Academy of New York and the J-Hoon Musical Ensemble. Art Activities and Multi-sensory Tour Interactive art activities and a self-guided, multi-sensory art tour will be ongoing throughout the day from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. In addition to observing works of art in the Museum's galleries through sight, the Sensory Art Tour will invite visitors to experience select works anew through the senses of hearing, smell, and touch. Vibrantly colored rose petals and their scent will brighten the fountain in the Patti Cadby Birch Court, the courtyard gallery in the Museum's Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia based on a late-medieval Moroccan design. Elsewhere, visitors may handle materials similar to those used in the group of select works-such as ceramic pieces, clay, and felt squares-inhale the scents of spices and fragrant oils, and hear related sounds and music. Art activities will include: a calligraphy activity with calligraphers Majed Seif and Maissa Hamed in which visitors can have their names rendered in calligraphic script and then decorate their page; and an Ebru paper marbling activity, guided by artist Yasemin Ozsavasci, in which visitors create gorgeous color patterns through the traditional process of paper marbling. Dance and Music Dance and music performances will occur throughout the festival. From 1:30 to 1:50 p.m. and again from 2:00 to 2:20 p.m., the young performers of the J-Hoon Musical Ensemble will teach songs and dances from the vibrant Kurdish culture of western Iran in the Museum's Vélez Blanco Patio. From 2:45 to 3:15 p.m. and 3:30 to 4:00 p.m. in the Vélez Blanco Patio, Nritya Saagaram Dance Academy of New York will dazzle visitors with the color and movement of classical Indian dance. The Alwan Arab Music Ensemble will fill the Museum's Ancient Near Eastern Art Galleries with the diverse sounds of the Arab world from 3:00 to 3:20 p.m. and 4:00 to 4:15 p.m. Stories from Four Cultures Young visitors are invited to listen to bilingual readings of stories from four cultures held in the Museum's New Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia. Storytime will begin at 1:30 with Turkish Tales, in English and Turkish. Persian Stories, in English and Persian, will follow at 2:30 p.m.; then Arabic Fables, in English and Arabic, at 3:30 p.m.; and finally A Story of Springtime, in English and Urdu, at 4:30 p.m. Closing Performance The Alwan Arab Music Ensemble will close the day with a performance in the Museum's New Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia weaving together folk, popular, and classical music of the Arab world. Henna Painting Between 3:00 and 5:00 p.m., exiting visitors are invited to stop by the henna painting station in the Museum's Ruth and Harold D. Uris Center for Education to have their hands decorated with imagery of spring gardens, including birds and flowers. General Event Information Senses of Springtime program information and directions to events throughout the Museum will be available at the Information Desk inside the main entrance at Fifth Avenue and 82nd Street, and in the Uris Center for Education, which is reached from the ground-floor entrance at Fifth Avenue and 81st Street. All Senses of Springtime programming is free with Museum admission. Recommended Museum admission is $25 for adults, $17 for seniors (65 and over), and $12 for students. Children under 12 accompanied by an adult are free. About the Metropolitan Museum The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the world's largest and finest museums, with collections that span more than 5,000 years of world culture, from prehistory to the present and from every part of the globe. Located at the edge of Central Park along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, the Metropolitan Museum welcomed 6.28 million visitors last year. The Multicultural Audience Development Initiative began more than 10 years ago at the Metropolitan Museum. It reflects the Museum's founding mission to educate and inspire by reaching out to all of its constituencies, including the many diverse communities of the New York Tristate area. Its objectives are to increase awareness of the Museum's global collections and programs, to diversify its visitorship and Membership, and to increase participation in its programs. ### Contact: Elyse Topalian, Terence Edelman Communications Department 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028-0198 tel (212) 570-3951 fax (212) 472-2764