New SPMH Board Member Holly Brians Ragusa admires the display of the art-carved organ panels in the Taft Suite in Music Hall.
As a New Board member of SPMH it was my pleasure and honor this grand opening weekend to share in presenting, alongside other board members and staff, the historic Hook and Hastings art-carved organ panels. These organ panels have been carefully restored by SPMH and are now on display in the Taft Suite.
With over ten thousand visitors to Cincinnati's Music Hall this weekend, this beautiful suite, a rental and donor space, now houses 30 intricately carved and thoughtfully preserved pieces of history.
Originally 121 cherry wood hand-carved organ panels comprised the screen for the "People's Organ" when the hall first opened in 1878. These art-carved panels are one of the few original pieces preserved from Music Hall—though for many years they were scattered and lost.
We can thank the dedication of SPMH Vice President Kathy Jansen, along with others, who began this quest in 2011. This unique and historic art-carved movement, and the restoration process, have been wonderfully detailed in a video produced by SPMH former board member Melissa Godoy.
We certainly are grateful to the many volunteer guides who shared their wisdom about the art-carved panels with our visitors this weekend and represented The Society for the Presentation of Music Hall in the best capacity, as stewards of this National Historic Landmark in Over the Rhine.
You can see the art-carved panels for yourself! Take an SPMH tour of Cincinnati Music Hall. Tickets go on sale Wednesday, October 11.