The George Gund Foundation has made a $3 million grant to Playhouse Square’s Advancing the Legacy capital campaign that will be used to restore the lobby of the historic Ohio Theatre.
The lobby, which will be renamed The George Gund Foundation Lobby, was badly damaged by a fire in 1963. During its early 1980s renovation, the lobby was not restored to its former grandeur due to lack of funding and time, and a simple, contemporary design was created.
Work on the lobby, which will include re-creation of murals and fireplaces, hand-carved ceiling panels and ornamentation, painting and new carpeting, is scheduled to begin in July.
“Playhouse Square is one of Cleveland’s greatest success stories,” said David Abbott, Foundation executive director. “The Foundation has been a key supporter of the Playhouse Square Foundation since 1978. This gift builds on our past investments and will help ensure that Clevelanders continue to enjoy the arts and cultural programs that take place in its beautifully restored theaters for years to come.”