Ending Up Helping :: January 5th :: CAPA Ohio

Just about every girl starts developing plans for her dream wedding right around the age of 5. I think I started planning mine before I even realized that there was supposed to be another person involved. All I heard was “party” and “pretty dress.” Any mention of a “groom” went in one ear and out the other.

My dream wedding plans have evolved over the years. At first, I want to be married in the church my family attended until I was 14. We switched churches, so I decided I should like to be married at my favorite place on Earth…Disney World. In all honesty though, that was my mom’s dream wedding for me. At that point, my dream wedding was on the Florida beach. This was my plan for a long time until I started accumulating amazing friends in Columbus, Ohio. I started realizing that it is more important for all of my friends and family to be at my wedding rather than on the beach. Onto Plan C (or D?). Where in Columbus, Ohio could I have my future fabulous wedding…?? Ah ha! My favorite place in the city would do just fine.

The Ohio Theatre!

My mom and I (and occasionally Dad) spent countless evenings at the Ohio Theatre seeing musicals (Phantom of the Opera, A Chorus Line, Wicked, Rent, Cats, Les Misérables, The Lion King, Chicago…I could go on!) and even The Nutcracker annually for quite a few years. When I was in high school, some friends introduced me to the Summer Movie Series at the Ohio Theatre. Each summer, old(er) movies are played on a giant projection screen in the theatre!

Because I was spending more and more time at the theatre, I decided to research its history. As it turns out, the Ohio Theatre was almost demolished in 1969! I might not have even had a dream wedding location if it weren’t for CAPA Ohio.

Columbus Association for the Performing Arts (CAPA)

The Ohio Theatre was built in 1928 as a magnificent movie house! Just think about going to the movies during the Roaring 20s! Now, we have sterile, yet comfy movie theatre. Back then, going to the movie was an event! Not only did the Ohio show movies, but “During the heyday of vaudeville, many top performers crossed the Ohio’s stage, including Milton Berle, Ray Bolger, Cab Calloway, Buddy Ebsen, Martha Raye, Jean Harlow, Ginger Rogers, Kate Smith, and a young emcee with a violin named Jack Benny.” 

As if I needed any more reasons to love this theatre, the owner, Thomas W. Lamb, chose Anne Dornan, one of the first women to graduate from the Columbia School of Architecture, to furnish and decorate the place! She searched far and wide, even traveling on African safari to find art and furnishings for the theatre. “Approximately $1,000,000 was spent on art and furnishings — more than the cost of the building itself!” 

In the 1960s, people began moving away from the city and into the suburbs. The lack of traffic around the theatre caused it’s almost-demise and the Ohio Theatre was set for demolition.

CAPA was initially created for the sole purpose of saving the Ohio Theatre. The “Save the Ohio” campaign attracted the attention of many locals and some 2-million dollars was raised to save the theatre. “The newly formed Columbus Association for the Performing Arts (CAPA) subsequently purchased and renovated the Ohio Theatre…”

Once the Ohio Theatre was saved, CAPA realized there was potential for even more work do be done. 

“CAPA also owns and operates Columbus’ Palace Theatre (1926) and Southern Theatre (1896). The 925-seat Southern Theatre was CAPA’s second major theatre rehabilitation project and reopened in 1998 following a dramatic $10 million renovation…In August 2009, Broadway Across America and CAPA expanded their agreement, increasing CAPA’s responsibilities to include marketing, event management, ticketing, sponsorship, and public relations for all Broadway productions in Columbus. For 40 years, CAPA has brought the best performing artists from all over the world to the communities it serves.”

If you have seen a stage production at one of Columbus’ beautiful theaters, there is a strong chance you have CAPA to thank! The CAPA Summer Movie Series is still one of my favorite Columbus activities! Tickets are not expensive, I get to see movies on the big screen that I may not have seen before, and, as organist Clark Wilson rattles off before each show, I get to “Sit back and relax in the air conditioned splendor of this magnificent old electric pleasure dome!”

Brenton, Rachel & Emily at the CAPA Summer Movie Series 2012

My friends Brenton, Emily & Rachel at the CAPA Summer Movie Series 2012

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteering at one of the CAPA theatre is definitely on my bucket list. You only have to be available 2 nights a month, and you get to experience the show and the theatre for free! Volunteering involves ushering for one of numerous shows at the theatre. The only tiny catch is that you have to be able to stand for the entire show, so I should probably do this while I’m still able! If you’re interested in becoming a theatre volunteer, please click HERE!

Donating to CAPA

CAPA makes donating financially definitely worth your while. No matter how much you can offer, you get the benefits of:

  • Exclusive pre-sale for CAPA presentations (ticket limit per show based on donor level)
  • Discounts and special offers on select shows
  • Preferred seating
  • Dine Originals “Out on the Town” discount card

WHAAA?!?! Talk about some serious perks!! Not only do you get these sweet perks, but “Your support allows CAPA to continue to bring the finest of the world’s performing arts to central Ohio stages, helps maintain our historic theatres, and supports shared services and collaborations impacting the cultural vitality of our community.” One of the things that makes CBus such a wonderful place to live is our vibrant art scene. YOU can help to keep it that way!  If you’re interested in donating to CAPA, please click HERE!

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the Ohio Theatre seats 2,779 people, so you’ll be sure to get an invitation to my wedding someday (hopefully!) soon!

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All information was obtained from www.capa.com

Find CAPA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/capacolumbus

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And please, DON’T FORGET!!! If there is a worthwhile cause on your radar, I would LOVE to hear about it! Perhaps it will make it onto this month’s Ending Up Helping series!

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