Around 100 people gathered in Brooklyn Botanic Garden (BBG) on Saturday to watch the first performance of Sachiyo Ito and Company’s traditional Japanese dance amongst the cherry blossoms after a years hiatus.

Sachiyo Ito has performed in BBG each spring for the past 29 years, but was forced to cancel last year’s show due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Sachiyo Ito at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. Photo: Mateo Ruiz Gonzalez for BK Reader.

On Saturday, families gathered on the garden’s lawns to watch the company perform three afternoon shows: Sakura, Cherry Blossom; Yanagi no Wakaba, Young Leaves of Willows; and an excerpt from Shiki no Hana, Flowers in Four Seasons.

Founded in 1981 as a performing and educational nonprofit, Sachiyo Ito and Company is dedicated to creating a bridge between the United States and Japan through artistic performances and educational exchange programs that promote Japanese culture through the arts, particularly dance. The company performs and teaches classical dance forms and presents contemporary works choreographed by Sachiyo Ito.

The weekend performance marked the first of the garden’s free weekly music and dance performances as part of its Art in the Garden: Spring Weekends – to be held over four weekends.

While the annual Sakura Matsuri festival is on pause this year as a safety precaution, these spring weekends will offer more than 20 performances in locations spread across Brooklyn Botanical Garden.

Art in the Garden: Spring Weekends is presented in partnership with Haiti Cultural ExchangeFiveMylesCumbe Center for African and Diaspora Dance, Brownstone Jazz, and the Brooklyn Public Library.

For more information about programing, click here.

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