The History Behind the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center
This center first opened its doors to the public in the year 1989 situated on 2301 Flora Street. This venue is managed and owned by the “Office of Cultural Affairs” in Dallas, and is the home to Turtle Creek Chorale, the Symphony Orchestra in Dallas, the Dallas Wind Symphony along with the well-known Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra. Over and above the symphony performances, this center has also been the host to benefit band, choral festivals, concerts along with corporate meetings and religious services.
Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center has also attracted famous performers like Ray Charles, David Sanborn, Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman. The center also hosted the “First Triennial Dallas International Organ” Competition Finals in the year 1997.
The venue was named after Morton H Meyerson, who was the former chairman of the Dallas Association’s Concert Hall Committee and the former president of H. Ross Perot’s Electronic Data Systems. It was the Concert Hall Committee that oversaw the construction of this building which started in 1985 and went on to cost a total of $108 million. Ross Perot donated a generous $10 million to the venue on the condition that the venue would be named after Meyerson.
This building was supposed to duplicate the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the Musikvereinsaal in Vienna, well-known for being 2 of the very best orchestral halls across the globe. Before the center opened the other venue in Dallas, situated close to downtown known as Fair Park Music Center which was associated with faulty acoustics.
The Eugene McDermott Concert Hall in the Meyerson Center was designed by I. M. Pei. This hall was shaped similar to a shoebox in order to disperse and reflect sound with a gross area that covers 260,000 square feet. The acoustical designs provided by Russell Johnson from Artec Consultants provided the 4-section, 42-ton canopy which can be lowered or raised as required. Opposed to placing wooden walls in order to amplify percussion instruments and brass, Johnson designed a wall that was made from square panels which are covered by loudspeaker cloths in order to disguise the hidden air-chambers that may be closed or opened.
This hall also features hidden chambers that add in 300,000 cubic feet of space dedicated to reverberation, along with 5-tiers situated behind the area of the orchestra that is used for the non-choral type events. The masterpiece for this hall would have to be the Herman W. along with the Amelia H. Lay “Family Concert Organ.”
It was completed in the year 1992, this outstanding organ which is mechanical actioned features 4,535 pipes. There are also 4 private suites in the building on offer for banquets, recitals, and meetings. This center provides dressing rooms, guest-artist suites, a sculpture garden and a popular restaurant.
Every year approximately 325 concert events take place, along with 20 to 30 banquets, around 200 film and photos shoot as well as 800 hours of recorded activity. This center is open to the public for organized group tours on request.
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