Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School

Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School

Premieres Thursday, June 21 at 8 p.m. on WLIW21

Premieres Sunday, June 24 at 7 p.m. on THIRTEEN

Streams nationally on and THIRTEEN OTT Apps


Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School explores the rich history and legacy of the world’s most prestigious performing arts conservatory, often referred to as simply Juilliard, from its creation to its move to Lincoln Center. Treasures of New York will also highlight the 34 year tenure of Juilliard President Joseph W. Polisi, who directed transformational changes to the school. With intensive programs in drama, dance and music, Juilliard has set the stage for some of the world’s most gifted artists with a star studded roster of alumni, many of whom are featured throughout the documentary along with footage and interviews with the current class of aspiring performing artists. Short Description:

Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School takes views behind the curtain of the world’s most prestigious performing arts conservatories, exploring the rich history and legacy with notable alumni and the next generation of groundbreaking performing artists.


Renée Fleming, world renowned operatic soprano and Juilliard alumna 

Notable Interviewees:

  • Joseph W. Polisi– President, The Juilliard School, 1984-2018
  • Damian Woetzel – President Designate, The Juilliard School
  • Ara Guzelimian – Provost and Dean, The Juilliard School
  • Christine Baranski – Actress & Juilliard Alumna, Drama
  • Danielle Brooks – Actress & Juilliard Alumna, Drama
  • Wynton Marsalis – Juilliard Alumnus & Director, Juilliard Jazz Studies
  • Itzhak Perlman– Juilliard Alumnus & Faculty, Violin; Dorothy Richard Starling Foundation Chair
  • Jon Batiste – Bandleader & Juilliard Alumnus, Jazz Studies
  • John Heginbotham – Choreographer & Juilliard Alumnus, Dance
  • Alanna Morris-Van Tassel – Professional Dancer & Juilliard Alumna, Dance
  • Yoheved Kaplinsky – Artistic Director, Juilliard Pre-College Division; Juilliard Alumna & Faculty, Piano; Susan W. Rose Chair of the Piano Department
  • Brian Zeger – Juilliard Alumnus & Artistic Director, Ellen and James S. Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts (or Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts)
  • Hsin-Yun Huang – Juilliard Alumna & Faculty, Viola
  • Jessica Garand – Juilliard Alumna, Viola; Founder, Opportunity Music Project
  • Alan Gilbert– Juilliard Alumnus & Faculty, Conducting & Orchestral Studies
  • Jane Gottlieb – VP, Library and Information Resources; Director of the C.V. Starr Doctoral Fellows Program, The Juilliard School
  • Benjamin Sosland – Administrative Director, Juilliard Historical Performance; Assistant Dean for the Kovner Fellowships
  • Richard Feldman – Acting Director, Juilliard Drama Division
  • Marsha Norman – Co-director, Juilliard Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program
  • Lawrence Rhodes – Artistic Director Emeritus, Juilliard Dance Division
  • Taryn Kaschock Russell – Acting Artistic Director, Juilliard Dance Division
  • Richard Egarr – Artist-in-Residence, Juilliard Historical Performance
  • Teresa McKinney – Director of Community Engagement, The Juilliard School
  • Mary Birnbaum – Associate Director, Artist Diploma in Opera Studies
  • Joshua Kail – Juilliard Student, Viola
  • Julia Warren – Juilliard Student, Drama
  • Sarah Pippin – Juilliard Student, Dance

Notable Quotes from the Film:

  • “We have a tradition of excellence that’s over 100 years long. It is an extraordinary legacy. That said, my attitude and my colleague’s attitude is we have to keep getting better. We have to keep working with our young artists, every new generation that comes in, and adapt to the changes and needs of what the future are in our society.” – Joseph W. Polisi, President, The Juilliard School
  •  “I auditioned for some schools and I got scholarships from different schools, but I always wanted to come to New York and go to Juilliard. Miles Davis went to Juilliard. Vacchiano was at Juilliard. Jerry Schwarz was at Juilliard at that time, and we still have the reputation. I mean, we are what we are.” – Wynton Marsalis, Juilliard Alumnus & Director, Juilliard Jazz Studies
  •  “Juilliard, of course, is done with intention. It’s not passive. It’s an active participation in creating the artistic future of not only New York City, not only of America, but of the world.”  – Damian Woetzel, President Designate, The Juilliard School
  • “You might over hears somebody practicing lines, or a bit of Shakespeare or August Wilson or Chekhov, or a song that they’re singing for singing class, or walk down the hall to the dance division and hear Chopin or Bartok and people at the barre dancing or some young choreographer making something and then right past that music coming out of the jazz division. Every day I come here, I can be tired I can be cranky and then I walk up to Lincoln Center. It is miraculous to work here.” – Richard Feldman

Noteworthy Facts:

  • The Juilliard School’s founding dates back to 1905, when German-American conductor and educator Frank Damrosch received financial backing from philanthropist James Loeb to form the Institute of Musical Art.
  • Philanthropist, businessman and then president of The Metropolitan Opera Augustus Juilliard contributed $5 million, almost his entire fortune, for the advancement of musical education, leading to a foundation being formed in his name. Five years after his death, the foundation formed the Juilliard Graduate School.
  • The Institute of Musical Art and the Juilliard Graduate School merged in 1926 to form The Juilliard School of Music.
  • During his tenure, President William Schuman later expanded Juilliard from an elite music conservatory to include an undergraduate dance program.
  • In the 1960’s, Juilliard continued to grow with the addition of a drama program spearheaded by Academy Award-winning actor John Houseman and acclaimed French actor and director Michel Saint Denis as consultant. The inaugural drama class included Kevin Kline, Patti LuPone, and Stephen McKinley Henderson.
  • The Juilliard School’s Lincoln Center home opened in 1969, housing all three of the school’s divisions.
  • During his tenure as the school’s sixth president, Joseph Polisi directed transformational changes, including the addition of the school’s first dormitories, the Meredith Willson Residence Hall; added a liberal arts curriculum; and most recently expanded the institution globally with the establishment of a campus in Tianjin, China. Juilliard’s star-studded roster of alumni have collectively won over 300 Emmy, Grammy, Tony and Academy awards, and include Robin Williams,  Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis, Richard Rodgers, Laura Linney, Leontyne Price, Mandy Patinkin, Phillipa Soo, John Williams,  and many other prestigious entertainers.
  • Damian Woetzel, former principal dancer of The New York City Ballet, will succeed Joseph Polisi as president of Juilliard in the summer of 2018.

Run time:  60 minutes

Series Overview:

Treasures of New York explores New York’s cultural heritage by spotlighting its points of interest, distinguished establishments and notable figures.

Websites: /

@WLIW21  / @ThirteenNY / @wnet #TreasuresofNY

Production Credits:

Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School is a production of WLIW LLC for WNET. WNET is the parent company of WLIW21 and THIRTEEN, New York’s public television stations and operator of NJTV.

Ann Benjamin is director of Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School. Ally Gimbel is senior producer of the Treasures of New York series and executive producer of The Juilliard School. Eva Rosenberg and Rachel Kahn Taylor are associate producers. Diane Masciale is vice president and general manager of WLIW21 and executive producer of local production, including the Treasures of New York series.


Funding for Treasures of New York: The Juilliard School is provided by The Jerome L. Greene Foundation.


About WNET
WNET is America’s flagship PBS station and parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21. WNET also operates NJTV, the statewide public media network in New Jersey. Through its broadcast channels, three cable services (THIRTEEN PBSKids, Create and World) and online streaming sites, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than five million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend and a range of documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings. WNET’s groundbreaking series for children and young adults include Get the Math, Oh Noah! And Cyberchase as well as Mission US, the award-winning interactive history experience. WNET highlights the tri-state’s unique culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS, Theater Close-Up, NJTV News with Mary Alice Williams and MetroFocus, the daily multi-platform news magazine focusing on the New York region. In addition, WNET produces online-only programming including the award-winning series about gender identity, First Person. Through multi-platform initiatives Chasing the Dream: Poverty and Opportunity in America and Peril and Promise: The Challenge of Climate Change, WNET showcases the human stories around these issues and promising solutions. In 2015, THIRTEEN launched Passport, an online streaming service which allows members to see new and archival THIRTEEN and PBS programming anytime, anywhere:


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