Smithsonian Journeys Dispatches

Photo: Vintage Metropolitan Opera

Pianist Josef Hoffman packs the house at the Metropolitan Opera in 1937. Photo: National Archives and Research Administration

New York's Metropolitan Opera Company wasn't always housed at the famed Lincoln Center Theater. From the Met's inception until September 1966, performances took place on Broadway between 39th and 40th Streets West, in a building nicknamed "The Yellow Brick Brewery" for its industrial facade designed by J. Cleaveland Cady. The new home of the Met at Lincoln Center was engineered by the man behind Rockefeller Center, Wallace K. Harrison, and displays two larger-than-life murals by modernist artist Marc Chagall.

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