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Tucson Music Hall renovations finish in time for return of live shows

Arizona Opera
Posted at 6:48 AM, Sep 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-24 09:48:12-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — If you have tickets to an upcoming show at the Tucson Music Hall, expect a newer and nicer experience.

"You'll see brand new carpet and brand new seats. In the back of house, the performers are going to have a brand new green room, new showers and it's painted back there. There is new sound and new light. The bathrooms have been remodeled," Rio Nuevo Board Member, Edmund Marquez.

The $6.5 Million project is the hall's first major renovation since the 1960s. Rio Nuevo helped make it happen while shows were put on hold because of the pandemic.

"We really want this to be Tucson's Lincoln Center. We want the upgraded user experience. When people come in they're going too see a different campus," said Marquez.

Last week, the hall hosted its first live performance since the pandemic began. Local groups like the Arizona Opera, Ballet Tucson and Tucson Symphony Orchestra are scheduled to perform in 2021 and 2022.

"We are now looking at re-entering the theatre for live theatre performances with our production of El Milagro del Recuerdo. It's a mariachi opera that will be our first time back in theatre," said Arizona Opera President, Joseph Specter.

This month, Arizona Opera was awarded a $2.5 Million grant from the Virigina G. Piper Charitable Trust. Specter said it's the largest one-time grant the organization has ever received.

Arizona Opera will also continue traditions started in the last year and a half. Virtual productions like, The Copper Queen Film, carried the organization through the pandemic and provide an opportunity to reach audiences beyond Arizona.

"We had international viewership for many of our programs last year. Why would be ever wish to stop having that broader impact?" said Specter.