Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum’s summer performance series Cocktails at Cooper Hewitt returns to the Arthur Ross Terrace and Garden Thursday evenings from June 21 to Aug. 9. The eight-week season activates one of the largest enclosed museum gardens in New York City with live music, DJ sets and performances from a talented roster of artists.

“Cocktails at Cooper Hewitt celebrates design’s vibrant influence on the performing arts and this year we are expanding our offerings to embrace an even greater diversity of genres and artists,” said Caroline Baumann, director of Cooper Hewitt. “Along with Cooper Hewitt’s first-ever Pride Night with the extraordinary Horrorchata, co-founder of Bushwig, we will welcome the viral sensation MILCK, the new sounds of ShoutHouse, an ensemble of 15 jazz, hip hop, and classical musicians, and the pioneering Heidi Latksy Dance, which confronts prejudice through performance and its inclusive company of dancers of all abilities.”

The series kicks off June 21 with an NYC Pride Celebration. Horrorchata, co-founder of the annual Brooklyn drag festival Bushwig, will team up with friends Hannah Lou, Merrie Cherry, Mini Horrorwitz, Angelica Sundae and more to electrify the garden with DJ sets and performances.

As the season heats up, Atlantic Records will present two evenings showcasing artists with fresh approaches to pop. On June 28, MILCK, the Los Angeles-born performer whose viral anthem “Quiet” became a rallying cry of the January 2017 Women’s March in Washington, D.C., and throughout the U.S., will perform songs from her debut EP This Is Not The End. On Aug. 3, Clara Mae will bring her electronic-infused vocal stylings to Cooper Hewitt.

On July 19, to coincide with New York City’s Disability Pride Month and the exhibition Access+Ability (on view through Sept. 3), New York-based modern dance company Heidi Latsky Dance will perform “ON DISPLAY,” a work in which a diverse cast varying in age, race, disability and gender transform into a sculpture court of living statues.

Juilliard School returns for a third season to present a series of evenings that spotlights alumni talent. On July 26, Drew Forde and Friends, a group that has made waves on social media with its inspired covers of pop hits on classical instruments, will perform. On Aug. 9, ShoutHouse—an ensemble of musicians and dancers with backgrounds in hip-hop, classical and jazz—will deliver the final performance of the season.

The full performance schedule follows (subject to change):

  • June 21: Cooper Hewitt Pride Night with Horrorchata and Friends
  • June 28: Atlantic Records Presents MILCK
  • July 5: Juilliard School Presents Kleine Blumen
  • July 12: Coco and Breezy with special guest performance by Zak Leever
  • July 19: Heidi Latsky Dance
  • July 26: Juilliard School Presents Drew Forde and Friends
  • Aug. 3: Atlantic Records Presents Clara Mae
  • Aug. 9: Juilliard School Presents ShoutHouse

Cocktails at Cooper Hewitt will take place Thursday evenings, June 21–Aug. 9 from 6 to 9 p.m., in the museum’s Arthur Ross Terrace and Garden at East 90th Street between Fifth and Madison avenues in New York City. Admission is $13 per evening with online advance purchase at or $15 at the door; Cooper Hewitt members receive free admission to all performances. With admission to Cocktails at Cooper Hewitt, visitors also may enjoy exhibitions on view in the museum’s first- and second-floor galleries until 7 p.m. Specialty cocktails and light fare are available for purchase from Cooper Hewitt’s Tarallucci e Vino café. Performances held rain or shine. Refunds are not available. For more information, visit

Juilliard School performances are made possible by the support of Dinny and Lester Morse.


Founded in 1897, Cooper Hewitt is the only museum in the United States devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design. Housed in the renovated and restored Carnegie Mansion, Cooper Hewitt showcases one of the most diverse and comprehensive collections of design works in existence. The museum’s restoration, modernization and expansion have won numerous awards and honors, including a Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award from the New York Landmarks Conservancy, a Gold Pencil Award for Best in Responsive Environments and LEED Silver certification. Ongoing exhibitions “Access+Ability” (through Sep. 3) and “The Senses: Design Beyond Vision” (through Oct. 28) provide a major platform for the growing movement toward accessibility and inclusive design, and are part of Cooper Hewitt’s greater, ongoing effort to broaden access and awareness to its campus, exhibitions, programs and online presence. From wheelchair accessibility to sign-language interpretation to touch tours and braille signage, the museum offers a variety of services for visitors who are deaf or have limited mobility or vision loss. Morning at the Museum, a free Smithsonian program for visitors with cognitive and sensory processing disabilities, takes place on select Saturdays one hour prior to the museum opening. The American Alliance of Museums Media and Technology Professional Network honored Cooper Hewitt with a 2018 MUSE Award for the accessible label system developed for “The Senses.”

Cooper Hewitt is located at 2 East 91st Street at Fifth Avenue in New York City. Hours are Sunday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The Arthur Ross Terrace and Garden, accessible without an admissions ticket, opens at 8 a.m., Monday through Friday. The Tarallucci e Vino café is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The museum is closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Public transit routes include the Lexington Avenue 4, 5 and 6 subways (86th or 96th Street stations), the Second Avenue Q subway (96th Street station), and the Fifth and Madison Avenue buses. Adult admission, $16 in advance via, $18 at door; seniors, $10 in advance via, $12 at door; students, $7 in advance via, $9 at door. Cooper Hewitt members and children younger than age 18 are admitted free. Pay What You Wish every Saturday, 6 to 9 p.m.

For further information, call (212) 849-8400, visit Cooper Hewitt’s website at and follow the museum on, and

Featured photo: Chris J. Gauthier © Smithsonian Institution