Behind the Scenes at the Ohio Theatre

January 17th, 2018 by CAPASMM

WOSU explores Columbus spaces that inspire creativity with us. Jeff Darbee will take you behind the scenes at the iconic Ohio Theatre. From classical music to modern dance, yearly family traditions to hot concerts, the world’s best artists come to the 2,791-seat Ohio Theatre. The breathtaking details (including the 21 foot high chandelier!) and opulent Spanish-Baroque architecture and design make any night out at the Ohio an event to remember. Read the rest of this entry »

CAPA Names Chad Whittington Next President and CEO

August 31st, 2017 by CAPASMM

Following an eight-month, national search, the Board of Trustees for the Columbus Association
for the Performing Arts (CAPA) today announced the appointment of Chad Whittington to the
position of President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Read the full story here.

Volunteer Spotlight: Larry Clark

April 7th, 2017 by CAPASMM

Volunteers are a very important resource to many non-profit organizations, donating their time, energy, and hard work to help an organization meet its mission, goals, and objectives. Here at CAPA, we are beyond fortunate to have a dedicated core of volunteers that help make us possible. We would like to shine the spotlight on one of our longest-standing volunteer, Larry Clark.

 photo Larry Clark_zpsfbyglq3k.jpg

Tell us a little about yourself!
I was born and raised in Columbus, and attended Columbus City Schools. I then spent three years at Ohio State, and finished up my degree at Franklin University. I was employed with Chemical Abstract Services for 35 years, and after retirement, worked as a substitute aid for the Educational Service Center. I’ve been very involved with my church, St. Paul African Methodist Episcopal, serving as a church officer for 25 years and holding various other positions for more than 50 years.

How long have you been volunteering with CAPA and what got you started?

I began volunteering in 1989, before the Palace Theatre was purchased by CAPA. I wanted to be an usher at the Palace since its days as the RKO Palace Theatre. All the downtown theatres had ushers that wore very nice uniforms, and during my college days, I wanted a part-time job at the Palace so I could wear the uniform. However, during that time (early 1960’s), those positions were not available to blacks, so I never applied. Years later when the theatre prepared to reopen, there was an item in the paper asking for volunteers. I responded, and the rest is history. I’ve been here ever since!

Can you describe some of the things you do for us?
I primarily work as an usher for the various shows at the CAPA theatres. I’ve also served as a gate attendant and on a committee for Picnic with the Pops on the Columbus Commons.

What’s the first memory that comes to mind while working with CAPA?

There have been numerous memorable moments over the years, but the one that stands out is “the night the pipe burst.” I don’t recall what year or show, but I was standing in my assigned area near the right mezzanine of the Palace Theatre lobby during intermission when I noticed water seeping from a utility closet. I looked in and discovered a pipe had burst and water was beginning to pour out. If I recall correctly, it was winter and the closet was unheated.
I notified Todd Bemis (who was the man in charge), and he took a look at it. Initially, he thought the show would be able to continue, but the leak began to increase. When water began flowing down the hallway towards the front stairway and seeping into some of the electrical fixtures, he quickly determined the theatre had to be evacuated and that night’s performance cancelled. Ironically, I remember the opening scene of Act 2 was a river scene! However, they got everything repaired and dried out in time for the next evening’s performance to go on as scheduled.

Do you have a favorite show you’ve seen with us?
My favorite Broadway shows have been Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables. I’ve also enjoyed some of the earlier solo performances held at the Palace Theatre when I first began to volunteer.

What would you tell others about volunteering with CAPA?
Volunteering for CAPA is fun! There are always opportunities to volunteer, but because of their large volunteer base, there is no pressure to work every show and no requirement on how often you must volunteer.

If you would like to join CAPA’s volunteer team and create some great memories of your own, contact Janet Rife at

Please join us to celebrate the life of William B. Conner, Jr.: Sunday, November 13 | 2 pm | Southern Theatre

November 4th, 2016 by CAPASMM

CAPA invites you to join us in celebrating the extraordinary life of President and CEO, William B. Conner, Jr., on Sunday, November 13, at 2 pm at the Southern Theatre (21 E. Main St.).

Conner, a pillar of the Columbus arts community and pioneer of CAPA’s innovative shared services business model, passed away on October 28 at the age of 64 after a two-year battle with cancer. The public Celebration of Life service will feature special performances and remarks from esteemed colleagues.

“Bill was a trailblazer who changed the face of the arts in Columbus with his vision, dedication, and boundless energy,” stated Richard Helmreich, chair of the CAPA Board of Trustees. “We invite everyone to help celebrate his life lived without limits, and the amazing legacy he created for the arts community and citizens of central Ohio.”

Superstitions and the Theatre

November 13th, 2015 by CAPASMM

Step on a crack, break your mother’s back…

A broken mirror means seven years bad luck…

Don’t walk under a ladder…

And just stay away from black cats!

Those superstitions pale in comparison to some that are true in the world of theatre. So on this Friday the 13th, while everyone else is avoiding open ladders and making sure to cross their fingers for good luck, we here at CAPA are keeping these theatre superstitions in mind!

1)  The Ghost Light

This ghoulish superstition is meant to keep those pesky theatre ghosts at bay. A single light bulb is placed on a wire frame on the stage after everyone has gone. It is said that this light is for the spirits of actors that used to dazzle the stage, to give them a light to continue to perform in the afterlife.  If the light is not left on, these spirits haunt the theatre and cause problems for performers. Ghosts also need some rehearsal time!

 photo ghost light_zpsn8vjds3n.png

2)  “Break a leg!”

Said to actors before they go on stage for a performance, this strange phrase is meant to bring good luck. “Break a leg” is believed to come from the idea that a performer must go on stage and hopefully perform well by “breaking through” the side curtains, known as “legs.” But let us not take this one too literally of course… we’re talking to you, understudies.

 photo theatre superstition_zpscohgmr0y.png

3)  No Whistling

Contrary to the beliefs of Snow White and her seven companions, whistling while you work is NOT welcome at the theatre. Long ago, whistling was used by stage hands to signify the changing of an act. If actors or audiences whistled during a scene, it caused major confusion for all involved, most likely resulting in some big problems. Though this practice was discontinued many years ago, it is still considered bad luck to whistle at the theatre.

 photo whistle_zpsw8ypqmza.png

4)  No Peacock Feathers

Beware of this deadly fashion accessory! Peacock feathers are generally banned in the theatre due to their history of bringing back luck. It is said that the evil eye in the peacock feather is blamed for bringing destruction to many a theatre production.

 photo peacock_zpsirlobxle.png

5)  Don’t Say “Macbeth”! (But we can type it, right?)

Probably one of the most iconic theatre superstitions, the curse of Macbeth is sure to scare even the most steadfast actor. Dating back to the 17th century, there are dozens of theories about when, where, and why performers started avoiding the play’s title—instead referring to the drama as “The Scottish Play.”  Some believe that the play’s fictional incantations—“Double, double toil and trouble…” etc.,—are authentic examples of witchcraft, and should be avoided like the plague. But not to fear!  If a mistake is made and the word is said, there is an antidote: Exit the theater, spin three times, spit, and utter a Shakespearean insult (or an equally vulgar profanity). No damage done!

 photo Macbeth_zpspo579633.png

6)  Bad Dress, Good Opening

Perhaps this one may be more to the encouragement of some bad acting, but many stage actors swear that a bad dress rehearsal foretells a great opening night. This superstition’s origins are unclear, but it’s certainly a beacon of hope for stage managers and directors alike.

 photo dress rehearsal_zpssyozmxpq.png

7)  Sleep with Your Script Under Your Pillow

Can sleeping with a script under your pillow help you learn your lines faster? Science says no, but theatrical superstition says yes! The practice is said to help actors learn “by diffusion,” but we suggest you hedge your bets and memorize those lines with some good old fashioned practice.


Don’t worry, we are certain all the actors in our upcoming shows are taking extra precautions and leaving that ghost light on!

By Alli Sweeney



10 Halloween Costume Ideas Inspired by Theatre

October 23rd, 2015 by CAPASMM

Halloween is right around the corner and you still don’t have a costume idea?!

Don’t panic, because we’ve got you covered. Here are 10 spectacular DIY Halloween costume ideas inspired by upcoming shows.

1. If you’re too excited about Christmas to think about Halloween, Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas can be your muse. Dress up as the Grinch, Cindy Lou Who, or a Whoville Townsperson!

2. Tap into your inner Julie Andrewsas you walk around singing “The Hills are Alive!”as Maria von Trapp from The Sound of Music.

3. Science geek? Don the iconic look of astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of National Geographic’s StarTalk, with a stylish and stellar solar system vest. You can even get your pet involved with a solar system hat or recruit a friend to accompany you as Bill Nye. The whole family can even dominate the universe as a whole solar system!

4. Looking for a group costume idea? Motown the Musical is the ticket. Find multi-color bell bottoms, and BAM! You’ll be singing:
A B C – It’s easy as, 1 2 3 – As simple as, do re mi – A B C, 1 2 3 – Baby, you and me girl

Or channel some Diva attitude as Diana Ross. You’re theme song for the night will be “I’m Coming Out!”

5. Does your toddler love “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood?” Your little one can easily become Prince Wednesday, Katerina Kitty, or even Daniel Tiger himself. We just can’t promise they’ll ever take the costume off again!

6. It’s a take as old as time, and Disney’s Beauty and the Beast also makes a great couples’ costume idea. Transforming into Belle and the Beast can be as easy as looking through your closet. If you really want to step up your game, go for Lumiere or Babette. Or include the four-legged family members in your house to create the perfect Beast.

7. Is your TV constantly on “The Wild Kratts?” Maybe it’s time to bring them to life in a fun and easy family costume to have a wild, wild Halloween adventure in!

8. You’re on a budget and don’t want to buy a Halloween costume, but still want to participate in the celebration? No problem. With a black tie, white button-up short, and black pants, you’ve just become The Book of Mormon‘s Elder Price.

9. All the girls dream of being effortlessly lifted in the air by Dirty Dancing‘s Johnny Castle in a sweeping grand finale. Become Baby Houseman for a night, and go out there and get your Johnny!

10. Feeling a little green? Elphaba from Wicked captures the essence of Halloween. No Elpaba is complete without a pretty in pink Galinda!

Don’t want to dress up? That’s ok. Pumpkin carving is a lot of fun! And we’ve got some great ideas for that too…

For more ideas visit our Pinterest page!

Fan Cam at Kinky Boots

October 15th, 2015 by CAPASMM

In case you missed Kinky Boots last week (or just want to re-live it), we wanted to share some ‘Kinky’ fans’ point of view! #KinkyBoots #Ohiotheatre #CAPAColumbus

You can also like us and view the photos on Storify .

Remember to share your photos with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram by tagging us or using our hastag #CAPAColumbus.

Kinky BootsKinky BootsKinky BootsKinky BootsKinky BootsKinky Boots

Thank you, Mrs. LeVeque

April 11th, 2014 by admin

CAPA mourns the passing of arts patron and devotee Katharine LeVeque who saved downtown’s beloved Palace Theatre from demolition in 1977 and then placed the venue into CAPA’s care in 1989. Her boundless love of Columbus and this historic theatre is the sole reason the Palace stands today as the workhorse of the CAPA stable, having hosted more than 4,000 performances and 10 million people since her tenure began. Nothing warmed her heart more than to see the Palace buzzing with life, and nothing warms our heart more than to know that because of her selflessness and guardianship, the Palace lives on today as her legacy. So much can be said about such a grand lady who saved another grand lady, but most importantly, we would like to say a simple, profound, and heartfelt, “Thank you, Mrs. LeVeque.”

Read the Columbus Dispatch’s feature story about Mrs. LeVeque here.

Building The Nutcracker set at the Ohio Theatre

December 11th, 2013 by admin

CAPA is proud to host BalletMet’s annual presentation of The Nutcracker at the Ohio Theatre. This elaborate and stunning production is the crowning glory of the holiday season and has been a favorite of central Ohio audiences for generations. Check out the video below to see a fast-forwarded version of all the work it takes to get these performances perfect and ready for you!

BalletMet Columbus: Time Lapse of the Nutcracker Load In | Ohio Theatre

One tour of the Ohio Theatre left this summer: Saturday, August 24

August 14th, 2013 by admin

As part of the 2013 Summer Movie Series, CAPA offers free, guided tours of the historic Ohio Theatre. There is only one date left to take part this summer – Saturday, August 24, at 4 pm!

The hour-long tours will begin in the front lobby of the Ohio Theatre (39 E. State St.) and will include a look at the history and restoration of the official State Theatre of Ohio. Tours will also include an exhibition of the theatre’s lighting and a demonstration of the original 1928 “Mighty Morton” theatre organ by featured organist Clark Wilson.

The tour is free, but reservations are required and space is limited. To make a reservation, send an email to with the number of people in your party. This tour does include stairs.

For more details, including a full schedule of the movies left for this summer, visit