On April 25, 2018, two centuries of American fashion history and the legends and rising stars of jazz, bluegrass, soul, R&B, gospel, pop and Broadway converged in New York City to commemorate Brooks Brothers’ 200th anniversary. This dazzling evening—held in Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall—was attended by nearly 1,000 guests from all over the world. Long-time Brooks Brothers customers, partners and friends walked down a Brooks blue carpet upon arrival—including Christina Hendricks and Geoffrey Arend, Katie Holmes, Zac Posen, Courtney B. Vance, Brendan Fraser, Don Lemon, Mike Doyle, Yara Shahidi and many more.
Wynton Marsalis, Managing and Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, presided over the festivities and was joined by Jon Batiste and the Dap-Kings. The performance included an ensemble of nearly 100 musical artists and jazz stars including Alison Krauss, Mark O’Connor, Chris Thile, Joey Alexander, Jared Grimes, Jessica Vosk, Ledisi, and Damien Sneed’s Chorale Le Chateau and explored the varied genres and eras of America’s oldest musical art forms. This all-star cast have a collective total of more than 40 Grammy Awards among them. And, to the delight of all attendees, the evening included an unannounced performance by legendary artist Paul Simon, who sang his classic hit “American Tune.” The performance closed with the entire cast on stage for cake, fireworks and a rousing rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Happy Birthday” led by the incomparable Shirley Caesar.
Following the concert, Jazz at Lincoln Center was transformed into a lively after-party where guests were led through a visual history of Brooks Brothers’ 200 years while dancing to a DJ set by Marjorie Gubelman, aka DJ Mad Marj. They dined from a delicious menu, created by Great Performances, which included an artful mix of treats, while rep striped vintage food carts offered a playful take on New York guilty pleasures such as gourmet pretzels, hot dogs and ice cream sundaes. Inspired by our heritage, themed cocktails such as “The Disrupter,” “The Golden Fleece” and the “Modern Classic” were served for the very first time. (To make your own Golden Fleece drink, scroll to the bottom for the recipe.)
Visual elements of our two centuries of style were evident throughout. In the Mica and Ahmet Ertegun Atrium, an exhibition of some of our historical items included a replica of President Lincoln’s greatcoat, military uniforms and mid-century modern tailoring, dramatically framed by the New York skyline as a giant hot-air balloon in a signature pattern hovered over the room.
Guests then moved to the dramatic Appel Room and its sweeping views of Columbus Circle and Central Park. There, a giant neon Golden Fleece lit the night sky and DJ Mad Marj kept the crowd dancing all night. Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola was transformed from a jazz supper club to a gilded Gatsby-inspired speakeasy featuring a live performance by Sammy Miller and the Congregation.
THE GOLDEN FLEECE
Be a part of the celebration today—raise a glass to our 200th anniversary with this recipe for our signature cocktail.
2 oz Johnnie Walker Black Label Scotch
0.75 oz lemon juice
0.75 oz honey syrup (1:1)
Glass: Rocks with crushed ice
Garnish: Lemon twist