Central Park Band Concert

Event Information

Washington Square

Event Type:

Record Information


Last Updated:
9 July 2022

Performance Date(s) and Time(s)

25 May 1870, 5:00 PM

Performers and/or Works Performed

aka Fraternization
Composer(s): Strauss
Composer(s): Rossini
Composer(s): Wiegand
Composer(s): Parlow
aka Autumn roses
Composer(s): Strauss
Composer(s): Suppé
Composer(s): Louis
Composer(s): Thomas
Composer(s): Scheuer
aka Perichole, La, selections
Composer(s): Offenbach
Composer(s): Unknown composer


Announcement: New York Herald, 22 May 1870, 7.

“Musical entertainments will…be given in Washington square [sic], on Wednesday, from five to seven o’clock P. M….should the weather be fine.”

Announcement: New-York Daily Tribune, 23 May 1870, 2.
Announcement: New-York Times, 25 May 1870, 2.


Review: New York Herald, 26 May 1870, 5.

“Under green trees the Central Park band discoursed sweet music to several thousand promenaders [sic] of every condition of life, even down to the groups of little children who squatted on the grass and beat their tiny feet to the tune of the music with a precision that was quite encouraging even to the most plethoric promenader [sic].

“The hours selected were between five and seven o’clock, when the cool of the evening is just beginning, and they are convenient for those whose domestic arrangements would require them at home either earlier or later. It was pleasant to see how greatly this musical treat was appreciated. Loungers of both sexes, lovers who were not so absorbed in themselves as to forget the music, the staid and proper and elderly inhabitants of the neighboring squares were all out in force, with a cheerful, radiant smile of satisfaction on their countenances. Everybody was, by this thoughtful consideration of the Park Commission, put in good temper. All dull care was driven away for the time being, and all the joy that music pours upon the ears of mortals was the inheritance for the time being of all who cared to stay to hear.

“Grafulla’s band, about thirty pieces, went through the following programme in a manner, it is needless to say, that well sustained its established reputation. The more favorite pieces of the programme were Rossini’s overture, ‘Othello,’ thomas’ ‘Polaca [sic],’ from Mignon, and Strauss’ waltz, ‘Herbst Rosew [sic]’ all of which received the applause of the listening crowd:— [Lists program].”

Review: New-York Times, 26 May 1870, 2.

“A large concourse of people, comprising men, women and children, assembled in Washington Parade Ground, yesterday afternoon, to listen to the first concert of the season, provided by the Commissioners of the Central Park for that down-town breathing-place. Grafulla’s Band furnished the music, and between 5 and 7 P. M. played a great variety of pieces, to the delight of the citizens of the Eighth Ward and vicinity. These concerts in the down-town parks, which are understood to have been ordered at the suggestion of Mr. Peter B. Sweeney, are likely to prove successful and popular, if that of yesterday is to be taken as a criteron [sic].”

Review: New York Clipper, 11 June 1870, 78.

“Music is not only provided in Central Park on certain afternoons, but also in our various city squares, where some of our best brass bands give a free blow. Thus ‘music for the million’ is furnished in goodly quantity, and if the hours were changed until after the working classes had finished their evening meal, the music would enable the people to top off with a very enjoyable desert [sic].”