2011 SPMH Annual Meeting

The annual meeting of the Society for the Preservation of Music Hall was held in the Music Hall Ballroom on Monday, September 26, 2011. President Don Siekmann called the meeting to order after members enjoyed a social hour including hors d'oeuvres and cash bar. Organist Trent Sims played a rousing fanfare on the Albee Mighty Wurlitzer Organ.

Don read the SPMH Mission Statement and declared that more than 450 people are SPMH members - those who give financial and other forms of support to the organization.

SPMH Board Members gave reports to those assembled:

  • Peter Koenig gave the Nominating Committee report, naming new board members and re-elected officers of the organization.
    He also recognized board members who are rotating off the board, and introduced incoming board members.
  • Ed Rider spoke about projects paid for by SPMH for services for tenant organizations, including gift shop software; ballroom seating spacers; the rehabbing of several water fountains and restroom repairs; and an upgraded ticketing system that will improve services for both the organizations and their patrons.
    He also spoke of Patricia Corbett's legacy, an endowment fund for the purpose of major support of Music Hall.
  • Kathy Janson spoke about Music Hall Marks, the newsletter/magazine which she edits for SPMH. Fourteen hundred copies are mailed out twice a year, and another 400 copies are distribted via lobby displays in Music Hall. Music Hall Marks is also archived online.
    Kathy focused on ''Music Hall Memories'' which showcases patron remembrances of experiences at Music Hall. More than 120 separate ''memories'' have been submitted, and they either have been or are scheduled to be printed in the newsletter.
  • Lisa Allison spoke about the Marketing Committee's notable accomplishments, including the new logo adopted last year and the updating of the Music Hall posters.
    Lisa also showed the redesign of the SPMH website, and described tours given in cooperation with C.A.A.
    Lisa invited everyone to check out the newly-designed crystal holiday ornament, which is sold in the Music Hall Bravo! Shop.
    Lisa also described the inauguration of the Mighty Wurlitzer Organ Series and reminded everyone that DVDs of the documentary Music Hall: Cincinnati Finds Its Voice, which are still available for purchase.
  • Jack Rouse was invited to the podium to introduce Duncan Hazard, chief architect for the Revitalization of Music Hall. Hazard, founding partner and Management Principal, Ennead Architects of New York, reviewed a Powerpoint presentation of "where we are in the process" of the revitalization. He explained the architects' guiding principles as beginning with a thorough understanding of the historical elements of Music Hall, and he focused mainly on the first floor lobby and auditorium. The images viewed were not the final architectural renderings because the process is not yet complete.

    Some of the elements mentioned were:

  • raising the north and south floors to the level of the center lobby
  • removal of the walls that now separate parts of the lobby
  • restoration of the grand north and south hall staircases (and removal of the escalators)
  • open grassy garden courts where the carriageways are
  • an all-day cafe
  • new rehearsal and performance spaces
  • Bravo Shop and ticketing in the north corridor
  • Hazard responded to a few questions, including the fate of the Music Hall auditorium chandelier. It is as yet unknown, but Hazard said it is too bright and it obscures the ceiling painting, which Hazard claimed was historical and more important than the chandelier.

    Some aoustical improvements will include a flat ceiling above the pit; narrowing the hall and three different sets of lifts which adjust to accommodate concerts. The different lift configurations include one for May Festival performances and another for ''roadhouse'' productions, as well as a maximum of 23-hundred seats for operas.

    President Siekmann closed the meeting with a brief summary of goals and plans for the fiscal year. Trent Sims played a few selections on the organ.

    Organist Trent Sims at the Albee Mighty Wurlitzer
    Organist Trent Sims at the Albee Mighty Wurlitzer

    SPMH President Don Siekmann at the podium
    SPMH President Don Siekmann at the podium

    SPMH Board members Ed Rider and Melissa Godoy
    SPMH Board members Ed Rider and Melissa Godoy

    Anne Cushing-Reid, Sr. Director of Community Engagement and Learning, with CSO Board President J. Marvin Quin II
    Anne Cushing-Reid, CSO Sr. Director of Community Engagement and Learning, with CSO Board President J. Marvin Quin II

    Lisa Allison, SPMH Marketing Committee Chair, and Barbara Boyd, an original member and continuing support of SPMH
    Lisa Allison, SPMH Marketing Committee Chair, and Barbara Boyd, an original member and continuing support of SPMH

    SPMH Board members Norman Thomas and Jodi Geiser
    SPMH Board members Norman Thomas and Jodi Geiser

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