Society for the Preservation of Music Hall

CINCINNATI'S HISTORIC MUSIC HALL BALLROOM

promotional photo of the new Music Hall BallroomThe Ballroom in Cincinnati's historic Music Hall can be rented for parties, dances, performances or other events.

To inquire about available dates or to arrange for an event at Music Hall in the ballroom or in any area of Music Hall, please call the Music Hall office at (513) 621-1919.

The Music Hall Ballroom's main stage was renovated to accommodate the donation of the Mighty Wurlitzer organ that originally played at Cincinnati's RKO Albee Theatre. Click here to read more.
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The Music Hall Ballroom Features a Design Motif Reminiscent of the Albee Theatre

A photo of the decorative columns in the Music Hall Ballroom The 22,000-square-foot Music Hall Ballroom is Cincinnati's largest event room outside of those in the Duke Energy Convention Center in downtown Cincinnati. When Music Hall's ballroom was renovated in 1998, Don Beck of Beck Architecture, Inc. chose an art deco theme to blend with architectural fixtures from the RKO Albee -- elements that were rescued and protected by Pat and Joe Perin and donated to Music Hall.

The Albee, on Fifth Street between Vine and Walnut, opened on Christmas Eve 1927. It was the toast of the town for many decades, but its glamour faded over the years and in the 1960s it became a casualty of urban renewal. When the Albee was torn down in 1976, the Perins purchased many of the decorative fixtures and used them in the showroom of their company, Perin Interiors in Springdale. After they retired, they donated to Music Hall for the renovation.

When you arrive at the east entrance to the ballroom, the first thing you see are the bronze-and-glass entry doors. To the right is the Albee's walnut and brass time keepers ''cage'', where actors and workers checked in as they arrived at the theatre. Once inside, floor-to-ceiling etched mirrors and columns that once flanked the Albee's main marble staircase now grace the room's walls. Mirrors and paneling from the Albee can also be found in the restrooms.

On the west side, near the organ -- which, between performances, rests on a platform inside protective folding doors -- there are other Albee touches. The theatre's filigree cast-iron railing was the base for the design that covers the baffles on the Wurlitzer organ.

The center of the bar is also from the Albee. Since a larger bar was needed for Music Hall events, sides were added and were crafted to maintain the look. There are also design similarities to the Albee, particularly in the coffered ceiling, which is the same type of ceiling as that in the Albee.

The ballroom's $1.8 renovation was undertaken by the Cincinnati Arts Association (CAA), which manages Music Hall and the Aronoff Center. It was financed by a commercial loan issued through Hamilton County, to be paid back through higher rental fees and more bookings.

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