The new David Geffen Hall has reopened, two years ahead of schedule. Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and the New York Philharmonic previously announced the acceleration of the renovation of the space, formerly known as Avery Fisher Hall.
The-long gestating project, once expected to be completed by March 2024, reopened October 8, 2022. A multitude of celebrations, including the world premiere of San Juan Hill: A New York Story by Etienne Charles, as scheduled throughout the month of October.
San Juan Hill is an immersive multimedia experience, commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts for the New York Philharmonic, that is designed to honor the communities that lived where the Lincoln Center complex now stands. The piece will be performed by Etienne Charles and Creole Soul alongside the Philharmonic, who will be conducted by Jaap van Zweden.
In addition to two galas held October 26 and October 28, the Hall will present a free open house weekend on October 29 and 30, featuring hundreds of artists in performance, as well as participatory activities and family events.
"The new David Geffen Hall is a once in a generation opportunity to create a new, more equitable, and more inclusive foundation for the arts in New York," shared Shanta Thake, Ehrenkranz, Chief Artistic Officer at Lincoln Center. "A cultural center that our great city deserves, it beckons communities from across the city to come and make it a home. At its core, this project is about coming together, learning from our past, and beginning to open doors to a new kind of welcome. We are grateful to our friends at the New York Philharmonic for their ongoing collaboration towards this vision."
The design team for the extensive project consisted of Diamond Schmitt Architects, led by Gary McCluskie, on the theatre; Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects Partners, led by Williams and Tsien, on the public spaces; acoustician Paul Scarbrough of Akustiks; and theatre designer Joshua Dachs of Fisher Dachs Associates.
The design for the new theatre introduces a “single-room” concept, eliminating the proscenium and moving the stage forward by 25 feet, with audience seating wrapped around it. Seating capacity has been reduced by 500 seats to 2,200, and a steeper rake will be added to the orchestra level, improving acoustics and sightlines. The Hall is now equipped with state-of-the-art HVAC systems, filtration and air purifying systems, and antimicrobial technology integrated into select surfaces.
For more information, please visit DavidGeffenHall.info.