A Letter from the President | November 2017


Dear Friends,

The reviews are in and Music Hall looks and sounds better than ever. The New York Times declares, “Cincinnati shows the way.... Just as the latest Geffen Hall plans were being sent back to the drawing board, this city’s stately 1878 red brick Music Hall was reopening to cheers after a $143 million, 16-month renovation that restored its High Victorian Gothic grandeur, uncovered bricked-over windows to open its facade to the surrounding neighborhood....” According to CityBeat, “Sonic balances are equalized, the CSO’s command of dynamic and tonal palettes can be fully heard and the sound’s overall presence and immediacy are a marvel,” and according to Movers & Makers, “Sightlines are improved. Seats and legroom are more comfortable and generous. So much better for everyone.... Go experience a new chapter in the history of Cincinnati’s most iconic landmark—our now even more worthy temple to music. 

The audience response has been tremendous, and this new chapter in the life of this treasured icon has the music world buzzing. As we have had opportunities to reacquaint ourselves with the space and acoustics, I can say that Cincinnati has one of the premier performance halls in the United States. 

This now completed renovation project was complex, and I am impressed with the level of responsibility, care, ingenuity and craftsmanship that went into making Music Hall more welcoming, more comfortable and more accessible...all the while rediscovering this building’s historic grandeur.

In particular, I want to thank Otto Budig and the Music Hall Revitalization Company Board for leading this important endeavor, and the many donors, government officials and lenders who stepped up to ensure Music Hall will be there for future generations. 

There are so many moving parts with a project of this scope, and it was expertly managed by 3CDC, an organization that poured itself into this undertaking. We are also grateful for the extraordinary design team, including the architects, theater consultants and acousticians, for their vision and meticulous work. Louis Langrée and I want to especially thank Paul Scarbrough and Chris Blair from Akustiks for their important and ongoing work in Springer Auditorium, where the sound is more present and vibrant than ever before.

Lastly, I want to thank Messer Construction and the craftspeople—the hundreds of workers who, with their hands and their hearts, made this historic renovation a reality. They have left an indelible mark on Music Hall and, thanks to many hands, this glorious icon will delight people from all walks of life for generations to come.

Enjoy the performance! 

Jonathan Martin