Joan and Sanford I. Weill to Become Carnegie Hall's First $100 Million Lifetime Donors
Carnegie Hall today announced that, thanks to a generous $14.6 million gift, Joan and Sanford I. Weill and The Weill Family Foundation have earned the unique distinction of becoming the first private donors in Carnegie Hall's history to reach the $100 million threshold in cumulative lifetime giving.This new gift to Carnegie Hall's 125th Anniversary Campaign will provide important support to Carnegie Hall's artistic and educational initiatives with $5 million specifically earmarked to underwrite the Hall's music education and teacher training programs in New York City public schools. Sanford I. Weill joined the Carnegie Hall Board of Trustees in 1983, was elected Chairman in 1991, and then President in 2015. For more than three decades, Mr. Weill and his wife, Joan, have been centerstage for each of Carnegie Hall's major milestones, generously supporting the 1986 historic restoration of the main auditorium (now Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage) and recital hall (now Weill Recital Hall); the building of the Hall's endowment fund in the late 1990s; the construction of Zankel Hall and establishment of Carnegie Hall's Weill Music Institute in 2003; and the renovation of the Hall's Studio Towers, creating a home for music education on the building's upper floors, in 2014. A committed fundraiser who has always led by example, campaigns led or co-chaired by Mr. Weill have raised $525 million for Carnegie Hall's endowment and capital projects. Thanks to the stewardship of Mr. Weill and his fellow trustees, Carnegie Hall's endowment has grown from $4 million in 1991 to more than $320 million today. Under the auspices of Carnegie Hall's Weill Music Institute, the Hall's music education and community programs have expanded ten-fold and continue to grow, now serving more than 600,000 people around the globe. "I can't remember a time when Carnegie Hall hasn't been a central part of Joan and my life," said Sanford I. Weill, Carnegie Hall's President. "We are so proud of everything that has been accomplished here over the years, especially in the area of music education, with kids having the chance to experience great music at the finest concert hall and develop their potential through music. It is very rewarding to think about how this amazing hall will be enjoyed by future generations. We truly think the best is yet to come." "It's my pleasure to congratulate Sandy and Joan on this incredible milestone and thank them for their unparalleled generosity to our community," said Robert F. Smith, Chairman of Carnegie Hall's Board of Trustees. "Stretching over decades, their advocacy for Carnegie Hall has been inspiring to so many of us. Their dedication to this Hall is built on our joint belief that music and education have the power to transform lives-and their work toward our cause will continue to make a true impact." "I have always admired Sandy and Joan's deep passion for Carnegie Hall, their massive commitment to music education, and their focus on ensuring that this iconic place is always safeguarded, continually evolving to meet the needs of today's audiences and the world's finest artists," said Clive Gillinson, Executive and Artistic Director of Carnegie Hall. "In my work with Sandy, he has always been a forward-thinking leader who, in asking the best questions and testing ideas, has always had the best interest of Carnegie Hall at heart. I could not have wished for a better partner for all that we aspired to achieve together for Carnegie Hall over the last fourteen years." News of this special giving milestone will be celebrated tonight with an announcement from Carnegie Hall's stage on Tuesday night, October 15, prior to the start of a performance by Yannick Nézet-Seguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra.
Photo Credit: Steve J. Sherman