Want a better way to engage with the arts? Lincoln Center is now—literally—at your fingertips, in the past year rolling out a multitude of new digital initiatives: from a brand new website that includes a video and editorial portal to two apps designed to enhance your arts-going experience. Now, more than ever, no matter where you are in the world, you can be part of Lincoln Center.
A lot happens throughout the halls and plazas of Lincoln Center over the course of one day. There are late-night recitals and full-length ballets; virtuosos in Alice Tully Hall and sparkling sopranos on the Metropolitan Opera House stage; cinematic and theatrical feats and jazz greats. Lincoln Center is always buzzing with new artistic promise, which is evident in the incredible performances presented across the campus. But how often do you actually get a glimpse into what goes on behind the scenes? In an effort to use new media and technology to reach a wider and more global audience last fall, Lincoln Center launched an unprecedented livestream event on Facebook Live on October 7: A Day in the Life at Lincoln Center.
From “sun up to curtain down,” viewers were taken around the campus in real time. We got to see The Juilliard School’s director of movement Moni Yakim lead his students in their morning drama warm-up class; the cast of 20th Century Women, including Annette Bening and Elle Fanning, at a press conference as part of the 54th New York Film Festival; a rehearsal of the Met’s Guillaume Tell; musicians from the Chamber Music Society rehearsing in the intimate Rose Studio and talking about their love of performing; New York City Ballet Principal Megan Fairchild preparing for that evening’s performance of Serenade; and members of the New York Philharmonic discussing music’s emotional resonance. And the response was phenomenal. The broadcast reached viewers around the world, with enthusiastic fans from Chile to Sweden to Serbia expressing their excitement and appreciation for the diverse artistry produced here on a daily basis. Through Facebook Live, Lincoln Center proved what a truly global institution it is. And that great art should—and can—be accessible to everyone.
Have you checked out LincolnCenter.org lately? It’s no longer just a destination to buy tickets—although now it’s easier than ever to find tickets to all events happening on campus with a calendar sortable by date, price, genre, organization, and more—but a veritable haven for lovers of the arts. At the heart of this lies The Score, “An Insider’s Guide to the Performing Arts,” where everyone from ballet aficionados to theatre enthusiasts to classical music connoisseurs can find something of interest. Need new music ideas for your morning run? Listen to the Essential Funk or Ethiopian Pop playlists, curated by top musicians in their elds. Picture yourself on a symphonic stage? Peruse an interview with Gianandrea Noseda in which he discusses his lifelong admiration for Verdi. Consider yourself an advocate for the arts? Get the scoop on how Lincoln Center celebrated Disability Awareness Month. Or simply feel like sitting back and relaxing? Enjoy a “listening party” with pianist Emanuel Ax.
While you’re exploring the robust offerings of the website, be sure to browse the new Video Portal. Fall into a rabbit hole of the very best kind with hundreds of stunning performance videos, filmed on our stages, including plenty from our extensive Live From Lincoln Center archives.
We rely on our smartphones more than ever to plan our days and get information on the go. And now you can augment your arts experience via your phones: Lincoln Center offers two apps for both iPhone and Android. If you’re planning a trip to Lincoln Center, be sure to download the Lincoln Center core app in advance. Not only can you conveniently get your tickets delivered directly to the app, but your entire experience at the performance will be (digitally!) enhanced. There’s nothing like a glass of champagne to make a special evening even more celebratory; via the app, preorder your intermission drinks so you don’t have to rush through your bubbly. And never stress at intermission again: Find the shortest restroom lines and you’ll be back in your seat before the curtain goes up. You can also get surprise discounts and tweet at your favorite performers. You’ll never experience a performance the same way again.
Whether your feet are planted on the plaza or you’re in the comfort of your own home, the Lincoln Center Tour app provides new ways to get to know New York’s premiere cultural campus. Enjoy narrated stories by international stars of ballet, opera, and jazz for an intimate look at the famed institution; fun multimedia extras (like video content, photos, and recordings that provide peeks into behind-the-scenes operations); and insider tips for getting the most out of your visit to the iconic campus. The sixteen-stop interactive tour is now available in seven languages: English, French, German, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, and Spanish.
The myriad digital innovations demonstrate just how far technology has come and the phenomenal impact it has on each and every one of us. Most importantly, however, these new technologies have helped Lincoln Center serve an even greater purpose: to spread the arts throughout and beyond New York City. And it is with this goal in mind that Lincoln Center forges ahead as a leader in the field.
Kaitlyn Zafonte is Associate Editor at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.