Architect Named For Hall of Fame At Jazz Center

A hall of fame planned for Jazz at Lincoln Center in the new AOL Time Warner headquarters will be designed by David Rockwell, responsible for the look of the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, the restaurant Nobu in New York and the hit Broadway show ‘‘Hairspray,’‘ center officials say.

‘‘I think it is going to be a sacred place in our hall where we pay our respects and present the greatest of our musicians and celebrate their achievements,’‘ said Wynton Marsalis, the artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Jazz at Lincoln Center has so far raised $108 million for its $128 million new home on Columbus Circle, due to open in October 2004. In January, the Coca-Cola Company agreed to give $10 million.

The hall of fame is being financed in part by Ahmet Ertegun, who founded Atlantic Records and serves on Jazz at Lincoln Center’s board. He made a $2 million gift in honor of his late brother, Nesuhi, founder of Atlantic Records’ jazz division.

‘‘I really wanted to have a space which would celebrate the history of jazz,’‘ Mr. Ertegun said in an interview, ‘‘and would do that in the name of my late brother, one of the people who produced more varied jazz records than just about anybody else.’‘

Each year, Jazz at Lincoln Center will induct a new group of jazz greats into the hall of fame and have displays to honor them. A seven-member nominating committee will propose 16 candidates, and the inductees will then be selected by an international panel of 65 jazz experts — writers, producers, impresarios. Their names will be inscribed on glass panels flanking a 24-foot-long video wall that will show historical clips and will also be able to take a live feed from the concert hall. The first hall of fame group is expected to be announced in April.

Mr. Marsalis said the inductees would be selected based on their ‘‘historical significance, the quality of their playing and the impact of their recordings.’‘

Mr. Rockwell, the designer, said he was using elements in the 1,200-square-foot space to evoke musical instruments — for instance, a rosewood bench curved like a guitar and a ribbed ceiling that contains projection and sound equipment. ‘‘The design in some ways plays a supporting role to the leading role of the music,’‘ he said.

The Jazz at Lincoln Center complex, designed by Rafael Viñoly and called Frederick P. Rose Hall, is to have three performance stages — the 1,100- to 1,220-seat Rose Theater, which can also accommodate opera, dance, theater, film and orchestral performances; the 300- to 600-seat Allen Room, with a glass wall overlooking Central Park; and the 140-seat Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola for smaller concerts and special events.

For its extensive educational programs, the group has created the 3,500-square-foot Irene Diamond Education Center, which includes two studios and a classroom.

by Robin Pogrebin
Source: New York Times

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