Our History

Pro Musicis has enjoyed a dynamic and often stormy history since its founding in France in 1965 and introduction to the USA in 1969. The legacy of its charismatic founder, Father Eugène Merlet, is most visible in the prestigious roster of Pro Musicis artists. His vision launched international ventures and attracted committed fellow travelers. Today Pro Musicis is firmly rooted on both sides of the Atlantic in Paris and New York City thanks to the generosity and passion of those who believe in the precious mission of Pro Musicis to nurture and share the artistic inspiration of the world’s finest concert artists. Highlights follow.

1965   Founded in Paris

1969   Incorporated as non-profit in New York State

1971   Inaugural USA concert, The Tombs, House of Detention, New York City

1975   Pierre Boulez conducted orchestral benefit, Town Hall, New York City

1978   Inaugural concert series, Jordan Hall, Boston

1981   Yehudi Menuhin benefit, Hospital of Special Surgery, New York City

1982   French public TV, 90 minute documentary

1984   Frederica von Stade benefit, Sacred Heart Convent, New York City

1985   Inaugural series, the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

1986   Inaugural series, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

1987   Jacqueline Massy-Metadier bequest, Chateau Valesne, France

1988   Mayor Edward Koch proclaims June 13 “Pro Musicis Day in New York City”

1990   Inaugural series, Villa Medici, Rome, Italy

1991   Inaugural series, Opéra Comique, Paris, France

1992   USA public TV, 60 minute documentary, Peter Rosen Productions

1992   Inaugural series, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, New York City

1994   Inaugural series, David Tang’s China Club, Hong Kong

1995   30th Anniversary Gala, Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, New York City

1996   Gala honoring Maestro Gunther Schuller, Wellesley College, Boston

1996   Hermes Gala to benefit Pro Musicis, The American Club, Hong Kong

1998   Award dinner, Jack Rudin, University Club, New York City

2000   Award dinner, Serge Bellanger and Ambassador William Luers, New York City

2002   Inaugural series, Salle Cortot, Paris, France

2003   Inauguration of partnership, Augustana Arts, Denver, Colorado

2005   Inauguration of partnership, Abbey Church Events, Lacey, Washington

2006   Award dinner, Ambassador William vanden Heuvel and Byron Janis, New York City

2008   “The Byron Janis Story,” Peter Rosen Productions

2010   Fiddle Fest in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall

2012   Guitar Fest in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall

2013   Father Merlet’s death in Paris on July 10

2015   50th Anniversary Gala, Piano Salon, Yamaha Artist Services, New York City

2015   50th Anniversary Festival, Collège des Barardins, Paris

2016   Inaugural Gala, Father Merlet Awards, French Consulate, New York City