Fusco Music Center Dedicated in Campus Ceremony
$2.5 million gift also establishes scholarship in music
November 1, 2019—In a ceremony on campus today, the 23,000-square foot music wing of the Murray Student Center at Marist College was officially dedicated as the Fusco Music Center in memory of longtime Dutchess County residents and Marist benefactors Frank and Nelly Fusco.
This dedication acknowledged the Frank A. Fusco and Nelly Goletti Fusco Foundation’s longstanding philanthropic leadership and commitment to Marist and its students, including a recent grant the foundation made upon its dissolution. The $2.5 million grant established the Frank A. Fusco and Nelly Goletti Fusco Music Scholarship—the largest endowed scholarship in the College’s history.
“This scholarship will ensure that the legacy of music education and performance at Marist continues well into the future,” said Marist President Dennis Murray. “It honors Frank and Nelly’s deep love for music and the power of music to enrich our lives. Most importantly, it will open the door for Marist students to take part in the College’s highly respected Music Program regardless of their financial circumstances.”
The Fusco Music Scholarship will be awarded to talented freshman and transfer students with financial need who participate in Marist’s Music Program. The scholarship will be renewable based on academic performance and continued good standing in the Music Program. Marist currently offers both a music minor and numerous performance ensembles, including: the Marist College Singers, Chamber Choir, Chapel Choir, Gospel Choir, several a cappella groups, and the Marist Band, Wind Symphony, Brass Ensemble Flute Choir, Percussion Ensemble, Woodwind ensemble, and the Jazz Foxes. In all, hundreds of Marist students participate in the Music Program in some fashion.
“We greatly appreciate the Fusco Foundation board’s generous support of Marist over the years and their decision to make this significant gift to the College,” said President Murray, who also acknowledged the ongoing advocacy of the Foundation’s board members on behalf of Marist, including Christine I. Cuttler, John V. Esposito, the late Frank J. Giumarra, John M. Kennedy, Shaileen Kopec, and the late Charles J. Maneri Jr., Emeritus.
In addition to sharing a love of music, Frank and Nelly Fusco each had distinguished careers. Frank was a prominent technology entrepreneur in the region, while Nelly was a celebrated singer, pianist, and composer in Europe and, later, in the U.S. Following Nelly’s death in 1994, Frank selected the College as the home of his wife’s musical legacy with the establishment of the Nelly Goletti archive in the James A. Cannavino Library and the naming of the Nelly Goletti Theatre. The archive includes more than 300 original compositions by Goletti, as well as sheet music, songs, lyrics, sound recordings, photographs, and newspaper clippings.
Previously, the Foundation had made major gifts in support of the construction of the College’s Cannavino Library, recognized by the Library’s Frank A. Fusco Reading Room, and the underwriting of the Fusco Recital Hall. Foundation gifts also established the Nelly Goletti Music Scholarship and provided funding to enhance the Nelly Goletti Theatre.
About the Fusco Music Center
The Fusco Music Center is a three-level, 23,000-square foot structure designed by the world-renowned architectural firm Robert A. M. Stern. It adjoins the east side of the Student Center and provides state-of-the-art facilities for all of the College’s music programs, as well as classroom, lecture, and meeting spaces that are available to the entire student body. This spectacular building’s assets are many. The stunning Fusco Recital Hall, with seating for 175, is a venue for small instrumental and vocal ensembles, as well as lectures, poetry readings, and other programming. A beautiful Steinway piano given to the College in memory of Nelly Goletti is a centerpiece of the venue. The Symphonic Hall is a magnificent 3,700-square-foot room, graced by 20-foot windows and a 25-foot coffered ceiling. As one of the largest gathering spaces on campus, it was meticulously designed for practice and performance by small ensembles. The hall can accommodate up to 350 student musicians. Rounding out the music facilities are classrooms equipped with state-of-the-art sound systems; a music library; a conference room; a string ensemble room that also accommodates brass and woodwind ensembles, the jazz band, and choirs; a piano lab; a computer lab that allows for research, composition, recording, and editing; music faculty offices; and nine practice rooms, each furnished with a piano.