For any of you have visited the National Gallery of Art on the National Mall in Washington, DC, you know how beautiful it is. The architecture of the building itself is reason enough to visit. And of course, there is the art! Most think of fine art as paintings, sculptures, and bronze castings, but one simply cannot overlook the beauty and art of fine music. And like everything else, the National Gallery of Art does not disappoint.
Several times a month, the NGA offers opportunities for patrons to enjoy some of the most beautiful music through the offering of free concerts. The artists range from piano solos to string quartets, to the United States Marine Corps Orchestra. Many of the concerts are held in the West Building West Garden Court (pictured below on the left), offering a beautiful, intimate setting. A few of the larger concerts are held in the East Building Auditorium (pictured below on the right).
Attending the Concert
The National Gallery of Art is located on the north side of the mall in Washington, DC. Parking is free along the south entrance, but can be difficult to get due to the limited number of spaces. You can also park at the Ronald Reagan Building just a few blocks away ($15 for the day). Entrance to the museum is free, as is the coat check, located just inside the main entrance. (Take advantage of this…especially in the winter months when large coats can be quite cumbersome!)
Be sure to arrive early, especially for the concerts taking place in the West Garden Court, as the seats fill up quickly. As you approach the Garden Court, you may see the entrance covered with large velvet curtains. This means that the concert has started, and no one will be permitted to enter. Be sure to speak to the docents at the entrance before giving up and leaving, however! They will let you in between musical numbers (or once there are seats available, if the venue is full.) Do not feel as though you need to stay for the entire concert. You can come and go as you wish, but it is recommended to do so only between musical numbers, as to not disrupt the musicians or those listening.
For a listing of upcoming concerts, click here.
Enjoy the beautiful music and let us know about your experience!