Share, , , Google Plus, Reddit, Pinterest, StumbleUpon


Posted in:

Graycliff’s Music on the Lawn imbues FLW’s “American Scholar Day”

In celebration of “American Scholar Day,” Graycliff will be hosting the full Orchard Park Symphony Orchestra (OPSO), featuring more than 50 musicians on Tuesday, August 31 at 5:30pm. 

Not only will this be an amazing opportunity to listen to the succinct sounds of the orchestra, which has not played a public event in over one and a half years, it’s also the perfect chance to view Graycliff’s newly restored gardens.

Photo by Matthew Digati

“Music on the Lawn will be like no musical event ever hosted at Graycliff! We are honored and elated to be the site of the OPSO post-pandemic revival performance,” said Graycliff’s Executive Director, Anna Kaplan. “The effect of the full orchestra paired with Graycliff’s recently restored lush historic gardens and incredible architecture will make for an unforgettable evening.”

American Scholar Day is an occasion identified by Frank Lloyd Wright on the anniversary of a lecture given by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Along with the musical performance, there will be an abridged reading of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s lecture* – The American Scholar – which was inspirational to Frank Lloyd Wright throughout his life. The classic text will be read by actor John Fredo.

“Every once a year I have the boys around me read Emerson’s The American Scholar. Get it and read it if you haven’t read it.”— Frank Lloyd Wright, address to architecture students, Chicago, 1957

Photo by Matthew Digati

As for the musical selections, the setlist will be an all-American program, including works by Gershwin, Copland, Bernstein, and Sousa. The orchestra will be led by the OPSO’s brand new Principal Conductor and Music Director, S. Shade Zajac.

Frank Lloyd Wright’s concept of ‘organic form’ was greatly influenced by Ralph Waldo Emerson’s thinking.

The fundraising concert event is set to take place on Graycliff’s historic lawn, where guests are invited to bring along chairs and blankets for viewing. All tickets include an individually portioned picnic-in-a-box and a cash bar.

Music on the Lawn is planned for Tuesday, August 31st at 5:30pm with a rain date of Thursday, September 2nd. Tickets are available at and begin at $50 for general admission (Graycliff Members save $15) with the option to purchase a premium ticket at $80, which includes a reserved adirondack chair and a complimentary drink.

All tickets include an individually portioned picnic-in-a-box and a cash bar will be available that evening featuring Clarksburg Cider. For tickets and more information, visit, or contact Graycliff staff at 716-947-9217.

*Wright was so inspired he is said to observe a holiday he titled “American Scholar Day” on the anniversary of Emerson’s prominent 1837 lecture to the Phi Beta Kappa Society of Harvard College.

Lead image: Orchard Park Symphony Orchestra Musicians, including OPSO Executive Director Brenda Small, at Graycliff by Matthew Digati of Buffalo Homes. This will be the first time the full orchestra has given an in-person performance in over one and a half years. Photography credit Matthew Digati of Buffalo Homes.

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

View All Articles by queenseyes
Hide Comments
Show Comments