The Musicians Club of New York is one of the oldest music clubs in the United States. Organized in 1911 by some of the leading musicians of the time, including New York Philharmonic instrumentalists, Metropolitan Opera singers, composers, impresarios and church music directors from the tri-state area, its mission statement on its certificate of incorporation is not too different than it is today: "The organization was formed to establish a higher standard of ethics in the various branches of the music profession and to bring a better understanding and closer fellowship among musicians." Under Walter Damrosch, who served as Club president from 1913-1917, and emeritus president until his death in 1954, Club membership reached a zenith. The New York Symphony (later combined by Maestro Damrosch into the present New York Philharmonic) was an early focus of the Club's charitable work. World War I saw a decline of the role of clubs in all walks of life, but the Musicians Club of New York has survived by continuing to serve a vital role, providing a stimulating musical and social environment for its members, in particular, and the public at large. A competition for young artists (1956) and a competition for living composers (1963) were added to it activities, both initially funded and named after the legendary conductor of the Boston Symphony Serge Koussevitzky and his wife Olga, who also served as Club president from 1962 to 1975. Olga willed the Club money upon her death in 1978; in addition, the Musicians Club received a major grant from the Koussevitzky Foundation in 1979. These gifts continue to be honored today through the Club's Serge and Olga Koussevitzky Young Artists Awards and the Koussevitzky International Recording Award (KIRA). In return, the Koussevitzky name gives great prestige to its recipients.
The 1911 Certificate of Incorporation and the 1979 Amendment to the Certificate of Incorporation, as well as IRS determination letter and links to the Club's recent filings can be viewed by clicking here or in the Main Menu in the "About Us" section.
If you are viewing this page from a small screen, you can click here to open the following six-page "Musicians Club of New York: History and Mission" in a separate window. If you are using a computer, you have the option of opening the file in Acrobat Reader or downloading the file by hovering over the bottom portion of the image: