Friends of Music Hall launches Windows on Music Hall, as outside world yearns to look in

When the pandemic closed the doors on Cincinnati’s beloved performing arts icon, Friends of Music Hall decided to open the structure’s windows to the digital world.

Music Hall in the snow. Photo by Joanne Grueter

The Friends of Music Hall – a nonprofit whose mission is to preserve, engage, and celebrate the 140-year-old building – saw an opportunity to create more intimate conversations with the public through its new online newsletter, Windows on Music Hall.

Long ago, windows were filled in with paper or papyrus, with bronze or stone, and eventually glass. The style of the 230-plus windows that populate Music Hall today speaks to the high gothic architecture at its conception. Many of the windows, once bricked, were re-opened and restored to their original glory during Music Hall’s recent revitalization, and tempt any history buff or passerby to enter its hallowed halls.

The new Windows on Music Hall e-zine borrows from the concept of windows and invites patrons and friends, neighbors, preservers and celebrators to join the Friends of Music Hall at their board and research tables as they go about their work.

While most Music Hall enthusiasts are aware of the educational offerings and Mighty Wurlitzer concerts sponsored by Friends of Music Hall, the e-zine will share behind the scenes glimpses at what it takes to preserve a building and educate the public. Readers will meet the people who are making those decisions and doing the work, and gain insight into how the board is being shaped for future generations. The publication will include links to our blog (for anyone who wants to dive into more research and history), special announcements (a new role for the Mighty Wurlitzer is forthcoming this spring), and submissions from the community in the form of poetry or reminiscences by those in love with the cultural icon that defines not just a neighborhood, but a city and its history.

View looking east from inside Music Hall through its famed Rose Window. Photo by Matt Zory

The first issue launched in November and contained information on the finial restoration, a robust welcome to new board members, Yemi Oyediran and Nicole Roberts, a little poetry, and a sneak peak at a historic print of Music Hall, available for sale to those in receipt of the email.

Windows evoke the idea of transparency. They break down the barriers between cultures and education. And they create a connection from those looking out, to others who, while currently isolated from Cincinnati’s beloved building and riveting arts performances, yearn to be inside.

See our one-minute video.

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Thanks to the Friends of Music Hall for providing this content.

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