New Cincy Shakes venue to open

By: Katrina Gross ~Staff Writer~

cincinnati dot com
Photo courtesy of | The new CSC theater plan aims to create a cultural destination at the southwest corner of Washington Park.

Over-the-Rhine (OTR) is an area in Cincinnati that has seen consistent growth and offers entertainment that has received critical acclaim. Its popularity is sure to continue as it becomes the new home of the popular classical theater company, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company (CSC).

The company recently applied for a Certificate of Appropriateness and zoning variance from the Historic Conservation Board, who approved the proposal.

The location for the new theater venue will be at 12th and Elm streets, the former home of the Drop Inn Center in OTR, which provides shelter and nourishment to homeless men and women. The chosen location is one of the 35 options that the company has been considering since 2013.

The CSC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, which means that funding for this process must come from other sources. It is renting its current space on Race Street in downtown Cincinnati.

The proposed new space seats around 250 attendees and would allow the company to use its space approximately 360 days and nights annually, as opposed to the current 272.

This new annual schedule includes 160 main stage performances, 20 collaborative performances, 25 rental nights and 20 days of summer camp.

Currently, three buildings reside in the new project location. Details of the design so far include a glass-fronted lobby, grand staircase on the south wall ascending to the theater’s upper balcony level and a reception space on the second floor.

Other ideas for design include backstage and loading areas located behind the theater and the use of materials such as glass, limestone, brick and even some bronze material. More details concerning the design and development of the building will be shared in the coming weeks.