Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Brooklyn Academy of Music
Brooklyn Academy of Music (B.A.M.) is located in Brooklyn, a borough of New York City, at 30 Lafayette Avenue near the Flatbush Avenue Station of the Long Island Rail Road and the Williamsburgh Savings Bank, the tallest building in Brooklyn.
Founded in 1861 the first B.A.M. facility at 176-194 Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights was conceived as the home of the Philharmonic Society of Brooklyn. It housed a large theater seating 2,200, a smaller concert hall, dressing and chorus rooms, and a vast "baronial" kitchen.
After the building burned to the ground on November 30, 1903, plans were made to relocate to a new facility in the then fashionable neighborhood of Fort Greene. The cornerstone was laid at 30 Lafayette Avenue in 1906 and a series of opening events were held in the fall of 1908 culminating with a grand gala evening featuring Geraldine Farrar and Enrico Caruso in a Metropolitan Opera production of Charles Gounod's Faust. The Met would continue to present seasons in Brooklyn through 1921.
After World War II, Brooklyn faced a decline like many other urban centers experiencing the doughnut phenomenon . B.A.M.'s audience and support base declined. In 1967 Harvey Lichtenstein was appointed executive director and during the 32 years that Lichtenstein was B.A.M.'s leader, B.A.M. experienced a renaissance. B.A.M. is now recognized internationally as a progressive cultural center well known for The Next Wave Festival (1983 to present). Artists who have presented their works there include; Philip Glass, Peter Brook, Laurie Anderson, Lee Breuer , Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Steve Reich, Robert Wilson, Ingmar Bergman, The Whirling Dervishes and the Kirov Opera directed and conducted by Valery Gergiev among others.
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