The genesis and creation of CMS and Alice Tully Hall
The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center was launched on Alice Tully’s birthday, September 11, 1969, a decade after the creation of Lincoln Center. With its creation, the art of chamber music took its rightful place among orchestral music, opera, theater, dance, education, and the literary arts on the Lincoln Center campus.
Composed initially of a boutique roster of expert chamber artists, augmented by numerous guests from around the world, the Chamber Music Society quickly earned critical acclaim and public popularity. While chamber music had been performed for years in other New York City venues, Lincoln Center’s new constituent institutionalized the art form, giving it a permanent home in a concert hall all its own. Under the artistic direction of pianist Charles Wadsworth, the organization grew and thrived—touring, recording, commissioning new works, and presenting a comprehensive array of chamber music covering some 400 years, from the Baroque through the contemporary eras.
President of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts William Schuman, First Chamber Music Society Chair Alice Tully, and Founding Artistic Director Charles Wadsworth.
Alice Tully Hall Seating Letter
Alice Tully was deeply involved in Alice Tully Hall’s design and construction. This letter is part of the discussion regarding her desire to make sure the seats had enough legroom for tall patrons.