Achievements of the Danbury Music Centre in Danbury Ct

The Danbury Music Center dates back to 1935, when Donald Tweedy brought together the Danbury Community Chorus and the new Young People’s Chorus, both of which he conducted, as well as several small instrumental ensembles, under a common roof. During those first years, he established the Danbury Music Center’s tradition of providing a venue for amateur musicians as well as for professional concerts.

Even during its first years, the Danbury Music Center was already staging major performances such as Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. The Danbury Community Chorus briefly disbanded during World War II, but was quickly reestablished afterward by Jesse Walker.

In the 1950s and 60s, John Burnett brought together amateur musicians to form the Danbury Little Symphony. It still survives to this day as the Danbury Community Orchestra. He also began summer classes to help string players prepare to become part of professional orchestras, a tradition which today has become the Preparatory String Orchestra.

In 1958, the provisions of Donald Tweedy’s will supported the Danbury Music Center as a venue for amateur musicians. This required separation of the Professional Concert Series, which he had started, from the Center’s amateur musical activities. For this reason, the Concert Series was reorganized as the Danbury Concert Association and separated out from the Danbury Music Center organizational structure.

In 1986, the old public library of the City of Danbury was donated to the Danbury Music Center. This generous donation allowed the Center to expand its activities and amateur support structure.

Every December, the Danbury Music Center performs a fully staged production of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Ballet, danced by the aspiring dancers of the community, with music by the Danbury Symphony Orchestra. This is the only performance at the Danbury Music Center which is not free to attend, with tickets available at a nominal fee of $15-20. The annual tradition of Handel’s Messiah at St. Peter’s Church, featuring the Danbury Concert Chorus and the Danbury Chamber Orchestra, is free to attend. Both these performances always draw standing room crowds.

The Danbury Music Center currently is home to the Danbury Symphony Orchestra, the Danbury Community Orchestra, the Danbury Concert Chorus, and the Danbury Preparatory String Orchestra. A 6-week summer enrichment program is open to teens and young adults in string ensemble, band, and chorus. A special program in West Afrikan drumming is offered for children entering grade 3, along with their grandparents.

The Danbury Music Center can be found at 256 Main Street, Danbury, Connecticut.