No blog yesterday -sort of busy with getting car fixed, Doctor appts and then a meeting in the afternoon with the Auditorium people.
It seems I am the reason for this future excitement (more on that later). At least that is what I have been told. I could be a pigeon for some mammoth undertaking by a New York mob that is trying to buy all of Columbus for themselves. Lately I seem to be a target for ne'er-do-wells (computer stolen by a Columbus business, art scams from Ethiopia , mailboxes almost being smashed by city employees (wrong house). . I won't go into that, way to weird).
BUT - what I found was an organization that had all the cards in place financially, CHECK! knew what they were doing with renovation CHECK! and knew what to do AFTER the Renovation was finished. CHECK!
That's a big thing - the AFTER renovation. These guys want to make money, not just make pretty! It's not just a hobby and a wish to make the place usable. They have plans.
|Photo courtesy Michelle Martin|
One person was a theater dude and knew the in's and outs of what needed to happen stage wise. I mean the little things that SOME investor/developers would not worry about until later. Like the problems with the Auditorium for handicap entrance ONTO the stage (a bigger problem they you would think). Size of bathrooms and dressing rooms and so forth.
Another person was most concerned with the audience side of the stage, seating, coat checks, bars and so forth.
But what I truly loved was their love for the building and it's history. For instance. The dressing room with the graffiti from the 1920s. They of course need that room, but they realized that through normal use the graffiti might be damaged so this is a concern. One thing they talked about was deconstructing those walls intact, and display the walls elsewhere in the building.
Another plan (all plans are still slightly fluid . .in a jelly-like fashion) involved those round rooms (see image below).
The round room on the "1st" floor would hold a small bar (wine and so forth) while the round room above it would have a hole cut into the floor, a large beautiful chandelier and a balcony so you could look down onto the bar. Again - the plans are fluid but it's a vision.
The main thing they wanted to stress was keeping the "historical integrity". OH - I should mention this is a local group. Not some fancy pants from the East Coast . . . but there could be some East Coast people involved (not sure of the pants they wear - I'll keep an eye out for anything fancy). And yes - unless there are some huge surprises this is a financially viable group. They understand the cost involved.
Oh yea - a correction from my last post. 400 seating might be to many. The seats are a little small so a few rows will need to be taken out. I'm not sure if they intend on getting new seating. If so I see a seat sale in the future.
My brother is an historical architect reconstruction guy and we toured and talked about the Auditorium a few years ago and he said the most important thing was, what will you do AFTER the reconstruction.
So I'll keep ya'll up to date on this and I am VERY sure you will see progress. Yet another thing the group knows about is self promotion! They are not going to do this quietly without anybody knowing about it. OH, we/they have plans (insert evil laugh). One of the biggest "dropping the ball" things Columbus does is the lack of self promotion.
Story time - about 20 years ago I was struggling at work with . . . . . "permanent record" problems . . if you know what I mean. Yet I felt I was doing a crap load of good work with a only a few problems from time to time. My boss Manu, talked to me and said I needed to be more outgoing about the good stuff I do.
Columbus is the Mr. Bates of cities. Keep things quiet - we don't want anybody to know how wonderful Columbus is.
ANYWAY - Speaking of self promotion (I mean - this blog is nearing 600,000 pages read, that's not an accident).
ANYWAY- Speaking of self promotion and I'll only boast this once (or twice). I WAS TOLD that the only reason this whole auditorium (The Broadway Theater) thing is happening is because of this blog. They would have never known about the empty Auditorium.
The story behind The Broadway Theater name is that Dickason used to be called Broadway.
And here is something creepy - Both the main people involved with this undertaking have the same birthday . . . .ON COLUMBUS DAY!!!
OK - I have work to do. Have a great day and stay tuned.