Havre de Grace Opera House | Restoration
Constructed in 1870, the nearly 150-year-old, city-owned building underwent renovations in order to better serve as a multi-use community theatre and performing arts venue. Work on the opera house involved comprehensive interior renovations and the restoration of the building’s exterior façade to historic period significance. Under strict guidance of the Maryland Historic Trust, the brick masonry exterior was restored, the windows were removed and new brick infills were salvaged for parts in order to restore the remaining double sash windows– which now function as intended, once again. Even some of the mahogany panels from the chamber room were salvaged and cleaned, and they now provide decorative column covers at the first floor gathering space.
The entire ceiling needed a comprehensive restoration requiring pieces of the ceiling and its three-part crown molding to be removed, modified, and reinstalled to meet the new configuration of the walls within the theater and its new control room. The first floor space includes a box office, dressing rooms and additional multipurpose space to support a number of activities for the arts and business community. The second floor boasts a modern theatre. The finished lobbies, offices, restrooms, dressing rooms, hallways and gathering areas are now ADA compliant and energy efficient with their state-of-the-art HVAC zones and controls. The new Opera House now hosts children’s theater and music, touring companies, local performances, music, film, and even business conferences.