Sunday, September 25, 2011

Cleveland Music Hall, 1220 East 6th and Lakeside, Cleveland, OH


Seating capacity 3000.


William H. Doan, industrialist, philanthropist, and grandson of the pioneer Nathaniel Doan, gave land on the north side of Vincent Street, between Bond and Erie, plus $10,000 toward construction of the Music Hall, a public auditorium to be used for religious, educational and musical advancement. The cost exceeded $50,000, and, as the city's largest meeting place, it seated 4300 persons. Opened November 9, 1885.

The Hall cost $70,000.(2)

"Uncouth and barn-like"(1)


Entrance was gained through Doan's Block on Erie Street. Thousands of Clevelanders climbed the steep stairs to the several tiers of uncomfortable galleries to hear the world's greatest musical stars and witness commencement exercises and public functions. After damage by fire, the hall was rebuilt, facing on Vincent street; and fire brought it's untimely end in 1898.(3))
The cause of the fire is supposed to have been the crossing of electric wires.(1)
It's builder, known for his philanthropies, died in 1890. (3)

The new venue with the same name, is located on the corner of Lakeside and east 6th Street, was made up of Public Auditorium (Public Hall, 500 Lakeside) and the Music Hall. The two share a stage that is divided by a partition serving as a back wall for each space.(4)
Stages back to back



Designed in 1916 and constructed 1920-22 South Wing. Frederic H. Betz and J. Harold MacDowell, city architects, with Frank Walker, consulting architect.

In 1927-29 the Music Hall was added by Herman Kregelius, city architect.(5)

The Music Hall, housed in the Public Auditorium along with Cleveland Public Hall, is the smaller of the two music venues and hosted many artists that were not ready for the “big”” hall which seated 4500.

The style of the building is Italian Renaissance, and the auditorium achieves a classical simplicity with it's wide ceiling of curved arches. The entrance lobby shows an impressive, if somewhat heavy, use of classical ornament executed in marble, tile, and decorative plaster. On the exterior, the problem of making architectural sense of such vast stretches of wall was admirably handled by the arrangement of the arcaded windows, the high rusticated podium, and the cornice line.(5)




From the 1950's until today has hosted some of Cleveland's most famous concerts including David Bowie’s first ever concert in the USA.




Jerry performed in both halls on
10/28/72 Grateful Dead (Public Hall)
12/6/73 Grateful Dead (Public Hall)
Of side interest is the report that a woman jumped on the stage during Sugar Magnolia to dance in front of Bob.
3/9/78 Jerry Garcia Band (Music Hall)
11/29/79 Grateful Dead Public Hall)
8/26/80 Grateful Dead (Public Hall)
11/25/83 Jerry Garcia Band (Music Hall)





1.)^Orth,Samuel Peter, A History Of Cleveland, pg.498.
2.)^New York Times, 1885-11-10.
3.)^Rose,William Ganson, Cleveland:The Making Of A City, pg.471.
4.)^Adams,Deannar, Rock n' roll And The Cleveland Connection,pg.77.
5.)^Johannesen,Eric, A Cleveland Legacy: The Architecture Of Walker And Weeks, pg. 72, 152.
6.)^The Cleveland Public Auditorium & it's Organ", 2009, http://www.municipalorgans.net/Records/Skinner/Clevelandpics.htm
7.)^Live: Public Auditorium, Cleveland, Ohio, http://www.beatlesbible.com/1964/09/15/live-public-auditorium-cleveland-ohio/
8.)^http://www.airrace.com/1929NAR.htm
9.)^"Cleveland's Public Auditorium Prepping for a Comeback". Cleveland.com. Cleveland Live LLC.
11.)^Cleveland's Public Auditorium, All Things Cleveland, http://allthingsclevelandohio.blogspot.com/2008/07/clevelands-public-auditorium.html
10.)^"Public Auditorium". The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. May 13, 1998.
12.)^Ott, Thomas (August 20, 2011). "Cleveland's Public Auditorium set for renovation, marketing". The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio).


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