Levy Opera House

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The Levy Opera House is an opera house built in 1851 at 350 Park Street on the northwest side of Court Square.[1] The last performance in the building was held in 1912 with an appearance by the Imperial Russian Ballet.[2]


History

The General Assembly authorized construction of a Town Hall for Charlottesville. The building was a Classical Revival designed to seat 600 people. The first opera was staged in 1861.

The building was purchased by Jefferson Levy in 1887. He renovated it and turned it into the Levy Opera House the following year. Following closure in 1912, the building stood vacant for many years becoming the Parkview apartments, which were rented out to men with extremely low incomes.

In 1972, the Perry Foundation bought the structure to stop it from being torn down to make way for a service station. In 1977, a group known as the Town Hall - Levy Opera Foundation bought it and planned to re-use the building. The federal government was interested in purchasing it for federal courts, which at the time were held in the Post Office Building on Market Street. That plan fell through, and the Hedgerow Corporation bought it to renovate it to become a data processing center. [3]

The building was purchased by Charlottesville and Albemarle County in 2002 for $5,375,000[1] and is now designated for use as a court building. The Charlottesville Juvenile & Domestic Relations District Court was located in this building for some time.[4]

Future renovations

The building is part of a discussion about upgrading the Albemarle County court system. See Albemarle County Courts Relocation for more information.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Levy Opera House record from the City Assessor.
  2. Web. This Day in Charlottesville History, City of Charlottesville, retrieved March 12, 2012.
  3. Web. Courts Master Plan Study, Dewberry, FPW Architects, NCSC, Courts Master Plan Study, Albemarle County, September 2012, retrieved June 5, 2014.
  4. Web. Albemarle County: We're gonna need a bigger court!, Brendan Fitzgerald, C-VILLE Weekly, Portico Publications, December 29th 04:06pm

External links