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A Very Special Behind-the-Scenes Look at Radio City

radio city hall stage view toward audience When Diane Lloyd arrived at Radio City Music Hall at 6:00 p.m. two nights ago, the theater was “dark”, but the lights were on for the MAS Patrons. She, and 53 others who had braved the nasty weather that night, were in for a truly rare treat. Hugh Hardy — the architect and mastermind of the building’s 1998 award-winning restoration — gave an insider’s behind-the-scenes tour of this world-famous concert hall. From the stunning art-deco lobby with its 60-foot ceilings, to the iconic auditorium, from the stage, to the smoking rooms (where no-one is allowed to smoke anymore), to the complex system hydraulic lifts underneath the stage, it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for all. Hugh Hardy, an MAS Vice Chairman, who has an encyclopedic knowledge of the space, asked the group before the tour began to just imagine a pre-1932 world in which no theater like this existed anywhere in the US or even the world. The guests were treated to a bevy of captivating details about the space, as well as incredible stories about Mr. Hardy’s time pressure to complete the restoration before the season’s first Christmas Spectacular with the Radio City Rockettes in 1998. MAS played a critical role in saving Radio City in the 1970s, when we successfully fought to put a stop to misguided plans to convert the entire hall into office space.

The Richard Morris Hunt Patrons Program

Named for the first president of the Municipal Art Society, the Patron’s program is an inner circle of our most dedicated supporters whose financial assistance is critical to our efforts. Our Patrons not only make a philanthropic commitment to the MAS, but also have an abiding interest in the issues and people that shape our urban landscape. They are invited to private receptions throughout the year with the city’s foremost urban planners and master architects that give then the inside view on our crucial issues of architecture, urban planning and historic preservation. To become an MAS Patron, call or e-mail Robin Lynn at 212-935-3960 or lynnr@mas.org.