Diva soars: Joyce joins board of Carnegie Hall

Diva soars: Joyce joins board of Carnegie Hall


norman lebrecht

April 30, 2015

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.”


  • Ben says:

    Lang Lang is on the broad too.

  • V.Lind says:

    Emanuel Ax still has a busy career. Whether he’s at the peak of it is for others to say.

  • Mark says:

    Audra McDonald is on the board – she is very busy

  • Gaulimauli says:

    Too young to be a Trustee? Ms DiDonato is wise beyond her years. As a board member she will surely be an asset.

  • Christy says:

    Wasn’t Fleming VP of the Carnegie board at one point? I may be thinking of another board, before she became VP of the Chicago Lyric Board. She was on 3 or 4 boards at one point.

  • Mon coeur s'ouvre a ta voix says:

    Not sure what the “window dressing” remark is supposed to mean. Window dressing is supposed to attract customers and supporters, no? JDD’s creds as an artist, educator, activist and humanitarian are well established and have been a part of her public persona for many years. Silly to think otherwise. She says that she intends to pursue her duties to the fullest. Why hide your guiding light under a bushel?