Since signing the dotted line earlier this year to lease the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House, Live Nation has wasted no time getting to work turning the historic theater into its latest music venue.
Construction is well underway at the 39,200-square-foot theater on North Broad, with plans for the venue to open at the end of 2018. Live Nation’s president Geoff Gordon and developer Eric Blumenfeld recently led a tour for Governor Tom Wolf of the grand space while under construction.
It’s a long time coming for the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House, which dates back to 1908. It was designed by architect William H. McElfatrick for Oscar Hammerstein I, the grandfather of Oscar Hammerstein II. When it opened, it sat some 4,000 people and was the largest theater of its kind in the world.
But in recent years the theater has played many roles, from a movie theater to a circus venue, to most recently, a church for the Holy Ghost congregation.
Holy Ghost still holds stake in the property along with developer Eric Blumenfeld, who in the spring announced that Live Nation had signed on to lease the historic theater.