Charles Ives Authority for the Performing Arts

Charles Ives Authority for the Performing Arts

Government / Boards & Commissions / Charles Ives Authority for the Performing Arts

About Us

The Ives Authority honors the rich history and memory of Pulitzer Prize winning Danbury native, Charles Edward Ives, one of America’s greatest music composers by providing a nationally recognized forum for the performing and creative arts.

Tucked away in a lush oasis of natural beauty on Danbury’s west side, Ives Concert Park hosts world-renowned artists in a wide variety of music and theater genres. The venue pays tribute to its storied roots in classical music while acknowledging the ongoing evolution of the art of live performance. With entertainment that ranges from enlightening to awe-inspiring, the Ives reflects the diverse multicultural community in which it resides; embracing the unique attributes that our performers and patrons bring to our site. A common love of the arts and the beauty of nature bring fans to our grounds. Their shared experiences here make them our friends. This nonprofit organization was originally founded in 1974. In 2007, Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton created a City Authority to maintain the Ives’ founding fathers’ vision and The Charles Ives Authority for the Performing Arts was born.

The park has become a tremendous resource for our community, initiating economic development for local businesses, as well as establishing corporate stakeholder partnerships that assist in underwriting the costs of performances, thus allowing affordable access to celebrated artistic experiences. This outdoor amphitheater with a seating capacity of 5,500, is situated on 40 wooded acres with a pond, breath-taking gardens, and public hiking trails. The park is located on the Westside campus of Western Connecticut State University. Ives hosts a variety of international, national, regional and local artists. With over 60,000 patrons attending events each year, Ives Concert Park boosts tourism and is an asset in attracting consumers, new residents and businesses to the greater Danbury region. This extraordinary entertainment destination has featured events such as the Celebrity Series, the Fine Arts & Family Series, Shakespeare, the Ives Festival Orchestra, Chamber Music, Jazz, Visual Arts, Arts Education, Children’s Events, and Cultural Festivals.


Ives Concert Park values its partnership with the City of Danbury and Western Connecticut State University who both recognize the value of this exceptional facility and the many benefits it provides. The Ives is proud of its contributions to enhancing the quality of life for our citizens as well as students who participate in world class productions on our stage.

The Ives Authority is proud to announce a new association with the world’s largest concert promoter, Live Nation. Live Nation Connecticut brings a significant respected international leader in live entertainment to the Ives. The company’s activities center on programming live music in the venues it owns and operates, including the XFINITY Theatre in Hartford, CT and the Toyota Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford CT – as well as promoting shows in other CT venues – XL Center, Webster Bank Arena and many more.

The Ives supports local social service agencies through Project Outreach distributing tickets to disabled and multicultural residents bringing exposure of the arts to underserved populations, while building audiences for future generations.

Ives Concert Park is extremely fortunate to receive generous contributions throughout the year from many sponsors and donors as well as in-kind contributions of goods and services. A special thank you to the park’s major corporate stakeholder sponsors, Wells Fargo Advisors, Newtown Savings Bank, The News Times Hearst Media Services, Union Savings Bank, Townsquare Media, Leverage Marketing Group, Berkshire Broadcasting, Comcast – Xfinity, RKE Productions, Matrix Conference & Banquet Center, Branson, Maron Hotel & Suites, Danbury Cultural Commission, Holiday Inn Express and Holiday Inn, Pepsi, Budweiser, Bud Light and Longhammer IPA.

The Garden Series @ Ives

Thanks to the generous support from The Meserve Memorial Fund and Savings Bank of Danbury as well as in-kind contributions from Shakespeare’s Garden and Coopersmith Design, The Garden Series was successfully launched last season. The gardens serve as a centerpiece for the growing number of patrons that visit each season. Elements such as fountains, arbors, reflecting pools and illumination help create a special outdoor space that provides a perfect complement to the enriching cultural experiences at the Ives. Features such as stone garden furniture along with benches are utilized to create naming opportunities for additional revenue streams.  Multicultural performances, art exhibits and receptions are offered free to the public with a special focus on exposing underserved populations to the magic of the arts. Sculpture exhibits provide gallery opportunities featuring the extraordinary talent of local artists who generously offer 30% back to Ives as a nonprofit donation for every sculpture that sells while on exhibit. Patrons invest in the arts with a purchase of a remarkable sculpture while supporting Ives Concert Park and the community.

Friends of the Ives, Inc

The Friends of the Ives, Inc., a 501 ( C ) ( 3) was established and is dedicated to securing funding for programming and operations at Ives Concert Park. Expanded target marketing campaigns promote Ives as an ideal event destination for weddings, corporate events, company picnics, private parties and receptions.

The “Ambassadors for the Arts” is a volunteer share program. Corporate community stakeholder  volunteers are invited to engage, energize and establish a  highly  charged, enthusiastic  team  of  advocates  who  are  a  valuable  resource  of  information  while  providing  exemplary  customer service  to  patrons  who visit the park at our events. Ives Ambassadors may offer a reciprocal volunteer share at partner community stakeholder businesses as well.

  • Arts & Economic Prosperity in the State of Connecticut
  • Connecticut’s Arts & Cultural Organizations
  • Mean Business  *  Mean Jobs *   Mean Cultural Tourism

Recent studies on the arts and economic prosperity provide compelling new evidence that nonprofit arts and culture are a significant industry in the State of Connecticut, one that generates $653 million in total economic activity.  This spending —$455.5 million by nonprofit arts and culture organizations and an additional $197.5 million in event related spending by their audiences—  supports 18,314 full-time equivalent jobs, generates $462.5 million in household income to local residents, and delivers $59.1 million in local and state government revenue.  This economic impact study sends a strong signal that when we support the arts, we not only enhance our quality of life, but we also invest in our community and the State of Connecticut’s economic well-being.”

The Ives Board of Directors is a motivated, energized team of fiscally responsible community leaders. They are unified in building on a strong foundation to increase visibility, expand audience capacity, innovative programs and outreach initiatives and enhance the artistic, cultural, educational and economic vitality of the greater Danbury area.

For 40 years, Ives Concert Park has been an inspiration for cultural enrichment for the entire family featuring quality performances that sustain the fabric of our community. We hope to continue to paint a picture of a future in which every member of the community can see themselves.  Working together we can reach out to all segments of our society and create spaces where diverse residents can come together and celebrate the arts.