ARSC New York Chapter
MAY 2015 Meeting

7 P. M. Thursday, 5/21/15
At the CUNY Sonic Arts Center
West 140th Street & Convent Avenue, New York
or enter at 138th Street off Convent Avenue
Shepard Hall (the Gothic building) – Recital Hall (Room 95, Basement level)

An elevator is located in the center of the building

Preserving "Music at the United Nations"

Presented by
Al Schlachtmeyer and Sok-Min Seo

From 1949 to the mid-1980's, two concerts a year of Western Art Music were
presented in the Great Hall of the United Nations in New York City. One
recognized the founding of the UN in 1948; the other celebrated the
adoption of the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Featured were
the talents of well-known performers such as Leonard Bernstein, Fritz
Busch, Charles Munch, Yehudi Menuhin, David Oistrakh, Emil Gilels, Claudio
Arrau, Lazar Berman, Luciano Pavarotti, Marian Anderson, Renata Tebaldi,
and Pablo Casals. Virtually all the concerts were recorded and broadcast
through syndication around the world. The reel-to-reel tape recordings made
from those concerts were, and continue to be, stored in a favorable
environment at the UN's headquarters in Manhattan.

Inferring that an archive of those concert recordings existed, Al
Schlachtmeyer contacted the UN and began the process of preservation and
digitization. Al was inspired by a presentation by Gary Galo and others at
the 2010 ARSC conference in New Orleans which recounted the saga of
resurrecting "Stokowski's Rarest Recording", Saygun's ‘Yunis Emre’, a
secular cantata performed at the UN in 1958 by an impressive array of
forces including the Symphony of the AIr. The 600 reel-to-reel tapes have
been copied, digitized and returned to the UN archives.

In presenting a selection of excerpts of those recordings, Al will be
joined by Sok-Min Seo, the UN's Multimedia Information Officer in its
Department of Public Information. Included will be performances by Leonard
Bernstein, Charles Munch, the NBC Symphony, Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, Yehudi
Menuhin, David Oistrakh, Jasha Heifetz, Lazar Berman, Pablo Casals and
Leontyne Price. This program was originally presented at the 2014 ARSC
National Conference in Chapel Hill, NC

Al Schlachtmeyer began collecting classical recordings in the mid-1950's
and became a member of ARSC in 1967. In the mid-1970s, he and a small group
of Midwestern enthusiasts created the American chapter of the Fritz Reiner
Society (now inactive) and edited its magazine. From 2000 to 2003, Al
served as a contractor at the Library of Congress, concentrating on the
digitization of Stokowski's appearances with the NBC Symphony. In 2004, he
helped initiate the ARSC Classical Music Preservation Awards. He and his
wife live in Alexandria, Virginia

Our next program will be on June 21, 2015

David N. “Uncle Dave” Lewis will present an expanded version of his
program WHEN
presented at the 2014 ARSC National Conference in Chapel Hill, NC


Subway: Take the 1 train to 137th Street City College and walk north to 140th
St. & Broadway,

then go east to 140th St. & Convent Avenue. Take the A, B, C, or D trains
to 145th St, go south on St. Nicholas to 141st St, (one long block), then
west one block to Convent Avenue, and south one more block to 140th &
Convent Avenue.

Bus: M4 and M5 on Broadway; M 100, 101 on Amsterdam Ave. (one block West of
Convent Avenue)


The Sonic Arts Center at CCNY offers 4-year Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees
in Music with a concentration in Music and Audio Technology. Their program
provides an in- depth curriculum emphasizing real-world skills with a
project-based approach. Students enjoy a well-rounded program, with
emphasis on audio technology, music theory, orchestration, and history to
help them compete in a field that today demands
an ever-growing and highly diverse skill set.

All ARSC NY Chapter meetings are free and open to the public.

Voluntary contributions to help defray our expenses are welcome!

To join ARSC, visit​

Kimberly Peach
ARSC Web Editor
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