Made in honor of the performance venue's hundred and twenty-fifth anniversary, the gift includes $5 million in support of music education and teacher training programs in New York City public schools. With the gift, the Weills are the first donors to reach $100 million in cumulative lifetime giving to the organization.
The couple's previous support includes gifts toward the 1986 restoration of the main auditorium, now known as Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage, and the Weill Recital Hall; the construction of Zankel Hall and the establishment of the Weill Music Institute; the organization's endowment; and the 2014 renovation of the towers above the hall. Sanford I. "Sandy" Weill joined the Carnegie Hall board of trustees in 1983, was elected chair in 1991, and was appointed president in 2015. In addition to their giving, the Weills have led or co-chaired fundraising campaigns that have raised $525 million for the organization.
"I can't remember a time when Carnegie Hall hasn't been a central part of Joan and my life," said Weill. "We are so proud of everything that has been accomplished here over the years, especially in the area of music education, with kids having the chance to experience great music at the finest concert hall and develop their potential through music. It is very rewarding to think about how this amazing hall will be enjoyed by future generations. We truly think the best is yet to come."
"I have always admired Sandy and Joan's deep passion for Carnegie Hall, their massive commitment to music education, and their focus on ensuring that this iconic place is always safeguarded, continually evolving to meet the needs of today's audiences and the world's finest artists," said Carnegie Hall executive and artistic director Clive Gillinson. "In my work with Sandy, he has always been a forward-thinking leader who, in asking the best questions and testing ideas, has always had the best interest of Carnegie Hall at heart. I could not have wished for a better partner for all that we aspired to achieve together for Carnegie Hall over the last fourteen years."