The Met Opera Chorus on the Met Museum Steps

| 09 Dec 2020 | 03:10

At a pop-up concert on Wednesday, December 9, members of The Met Opera Chorus gathered on the front steps of The Metropolitan Museum of Art to present a gift to the city: a brief concert featuring three holiday songs, “Carol of the Bells,” “Winter Wonderland,” and the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah. This live event was organized by NYCNext as part of a series of pop-up performances designed to infuse spontaneity and energy into New York City.

The ensemble comprised members of The Met Opera Chorus, who have been out of work without pay since the COVID-19 shutdown began in March.

“We’ve missed singing, so we wanted to bring a moment of hope and joy to our city during the holidays,” says Ned Hanlon of the Met Opera Chorus. “We’re grateful to The Metropolitan Museum of Art and NYCNext for providing us with such a fabulous stage to share a little music during this time, which has been so difficult for us and countless others in this city and all over the world. We’re thankful that we’ve been able to gather together, even briefly, to make some music and bring a little light and love to as many people as we can.”

“During this incredibly challenging year, the arts have provided us all with moments of deep meditation and encouraging opportunities for inspiration,” said Max Hollein, director of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. “We’ve experienced the strength and unity of the arts community in New York City, and this morning we saw the power of not just one, but two Mets. We were thrilled to have the members of the Met Opera Chorus come together and perform on The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s steps, one of the City’s greatest gathering spaces.”

The event was spearheaded by NYCNext, a group of volunteer New Yorkers from all sectors who have joined together with the mission of helping build the next New York by creating and producing live, spontaneous pop-up events. Their aim is to harness the creative energy and spirit of New York to bring moments of joy, while also giving back to the artists, neighborhoods, and people who make the city home.

“We created NYCNext just at the end of the summer to support our artists community and celebrate New York, the city we love,” said Maryam Banikarim, co-founder of NYCNext. “Having The Met Opera Chorus perform on the iconic steps of The Metropolitan Museum of Art reminds us of what makes New York, New York. It also gives us inspiration, hope and joy in this holiday season.”

As part of its dedication to supporting artists in New York City, NYCNext paid a stipend to each singer that participated in the event.