At the American Academy of Arts and Letters at Audubon Terrace in Washington Heights, you can view the Connecticut studio of a famous American composer recreated piece by piece. Charles Edward Ives was one of the first American composers to achieve international renown. He spent his life in Connecticut and New York composing songs that embodied his environment, including Variations on America and Central Park in the Dark.
When Ives died in 1954, his widow bequeathed the royalties from his music to the American Academy of Arts and Letters for the Charles Ives Prize, a scholarship for young composers. When Ives grandson, Charles Ives Tyler, decided to sell the family’s Connecticut home, he reached out to a number of organizations who might be interested in preserving his grandfather’s legacy.
Ultimately, Tyler selected the American Academy of Arts and Letters to take his grandfather’s studio, and recreate it in their Manhattan headquarters. Over 3,000 objects were cataloged and restored before being put on display alongside a small exhibit. The Ives studio is now a permanent exhibit at the Academy and is open to the public from March 6 to April 12 and again from May 22 through June 15.
While you’re at Audubon Terrace, also check out the gorgeous Hispanic Society of America.