Diva soars: Joyce joins board of Carnegie Hall
April 30, 2015 by norman lebrecht
It’s not unusual for major divas to join – and even chair (Beverley Sills) – boards of management once they go into retirement. But we can’t recall one who’s taken a seat at the mahogany table while at the peak of a busy career.
Joyce DiDonato just did. Rub your eyes and read the press release.
At a meeting on April 28, Joyce DiDonato was elected as a member of Carnegie Hall’s Board of Trustees. The news follows her hugely successful Carnegie Hall Perspectives residency this season, which showed off a wide range of her interests and talents not just as a leading opera star, but as an educator and passionate advocate for young singers.
Consolidating her place as a great favourite of Carnegie Hall audiences, Perspectives included a complete performance of Handel’s Alcina with The English Concert; a ‘Journey through Venice’ with pianist David Zobel, and a celebration of bel canto with The Philadelphia Orchestra. A particular highlight grew out of her participation in the Weill Music Institute’s Lullaby Project—a Carnegie Hall programme that engages young mothers from local shelters and prisons in song-writing workshops — when she selected and sang lullabies written by the participants in commissioned arrangements by Luna Pearl Woolf in a Zankel Hall concert with the Brentano String Quartet. She also led a set of public master classes for young singers which had an unprecedented number of views on themedici.tv website, nearly 300,000 to date, and worked extensively with New York City middle school students.
As a Trustee of Carnegie Hall, she joins an illustrious list of great artists including Emanuel Ax, Renée Fleming, Marilyn Horne, Yo-Yo Ma, Audra McDonald and Jessye Norman.
Joyce DiDonato said:
I am deeply humbled to have been invited to join Carnegie Hall as a Trustee, for joining an organization that so gloriously exalts music, harmony and peace not only in New York City, but around the globe, is precisely where I want to be. I’m particularly motivated to lend any help I can to the Weill Music Institute, which I think is truly leading the way for communities around the globe to use the music and the arts to heal and to uplift every member of their community. I look forward to this being a most inspired and explosive collaboration!
Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director, Carnegie Hall said:
“We’re delighted that Joyce has agreed to join Carnegie Hall’s Board of Trustees. Coming off a highly successful Perspectives series this past season, including wonderful performances and in-depth engagement with Carnegie Hall’s music education programs, we’re excited to continue our work with her in this meaningful and ongoing way. Joyce’s experience as a leading international artist and her keen insights into music, education, and service to audiences will make her a great asset to our board.”
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