After months of construction delays and a gut-renovation that hit the $11 million mark, the historic Carver Theater on Orleans Avenue is open at last. Built in 1950, the Tremé theater was one of the first to cater to black audiences when the Jim Crow laws mandated segregation. In 1980, the Carver shut down and a medical clinic took over the space in 1984. The floods that followed Hurricane Katrina left about five feet of water in the building and after owner Dr. Eugene Oppman and his crew tackled the wrecked building and gutted it, he decided to bring the Carver Theater back. The complete makeover of the 16,000-square-foot venue also included a restoration of the famed marquee and sign, a million dollar sound system, and the addition of a wing to make room for an elevator. There are no chairs bolted to the floor like the standard theater set-up and The Advocate says there's "little adornment in the auditorium." One shouldn't expect the glitz of The Saenger here but hey-yo, there is a second floor VIP room with a bar and until a set music and theater schedule gets rolling, the theater is available for event rentals.
· Historic Carver Theater returns to N.O. landscape [Advocate]
· Carver Theater coverage [Curbed NOLA]
· The historic Carver Theater [official site]