CAPA believes in the power of diversity.
CAPA enriches lives by cultivating and nurturing the arts, spreading an appreciation that can be felt in hearts, minds and the economy of our communities.
OUR VISION: Columbus is a national destination for living, breathing art.
CAPA was formed in 1969 to save the historic Ohio Theatre (Columbus) from the wrecking ball. After the theatre was saved, CAPA renovated the magnificent 1928 movie palace to its original glory. It was then, that CAPA became the leaders in theatre rehabilitation and downtown redevelopment.
Since then, CAPA has adopted Columbus’ Palace Theatre (1926) and Southern Theatre (1896). The 925-seat Southern Theatre was CAPA’s second major theatre rehabilitation project, reopening in 1998 after a dramatic $10 million renovation.
In 1994, CAPA entered an agreement with the State of Ohio to manage the four contemporary-style Riffe Center Theatres in the Vern Riffe Center for Government and the Arts, including the Davidson Theatre and Studios One, Two, and Three.
Because of CAPA’s growing reputation in theatre management, the City of New Haven selected CAPA to operate the 1,600-seat Shubert Theatre in 2001. CAPA established a Connecticut not-for-profit organization, the Connecticut Association for the Performing Arts (CAPA), to operate the Shubert, one of the nation’s legendary Broadway tryout houses. CAPA (Connecticut) employs a resident staff of 10 and has its own local board of directors.
In 2007, CAPA was approached by the City of Columbus to renovate and manage the historic Lincoln Theatre (1928). The theatre underwent an extensive $13.5 million renovation helmed by CAPA and reopened in 2009 as a multi-use, state-of-the-art urban performing arts and education center. Today, the 566-seat venue is managed by CAPA staff and a local board of directors, the Lincoln Theatre Association.
In March 2009, CAPA took on the production of Festival Latino, the largest Hispanic event in Ohio and an annual Columbus tradition. The event, previously funded and produced by the City of Columbus, was on the verge of being discontinued due to City budget cuts. However, CAPA stepped in, restructured the event to be more family-friendly, and hosts thousands of Festival-goers each year.
In August 2009, Broadway Across America and CAPA expanded their agreement, increasing CAPA’s responsibilities to include marketing, event management, ticketing, sponsorship, and public relations for all Broadway productions in Columbus.
One unique aspect of CAPA is its shared service business model, offering personalized back office services to local arts organizations. While each agreement is tailored to fit each organization’s needs, some of these services include marketing, ticketing, management, operations, finance, publicity, human resources, IT, and development.
These shared services have been extended to help many local arts organizations. In 2003, CAPA entered an agreement with the Contemporary American Theatre Company (CATCO). In 2009, CAPA entered an agreement with Franklin Park Conservatory. In 2010, CAPA entered an agreement with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. In 2011, CAPA entered an agreement with Friends of the Drexel, Inc. to manage the historic Drexel Theatre.Additionally, in 2011, CAPA entered an agreement with Opera Columbus. And in 2013, CAPA entered an agreement with the McCoy Center for the Arts.
Paying tribute to the Ohio Theatre’s roots as a movie palace, CAPA also hosts the annual CAPA Summer Movie Series. Started in 1970, it is the longest-running classic film series in the nation. CAPA prides themselves on using 35mm reels for as many of the films as possible. The theatre’s original Morton Theatre Organ is used every night of the series, as well as the entire performance of our annual silent film.
For more than 40 years, CAPA has brought the best performing artists from around the world to these stages, including jazz, world music, Latin, country/folk, Celtic, comedy, pop, theatre, dance, family programming, and much more.
Since its inception in 1969, CAPA has achieved international recognition for the diversity of the performing arts and entertainment programming it presents, the dramatic restoration of historic theatres, excellence in facility management, and positive contributions to the quality of life in downtown Columbus.
CAPA is extremely fortunate to have a Board of Trustees comprised of hardworking and devoted leaders from the central Ohio community.
As part of our mission, CAPA is always hard at work supporting the communities we serve.
Learn about CAPA's new regional ticketing system, CBUSArts.
It takes a lot of behind-the-scenes effort to bring quality entertainment to Columbus. Join our team!
Interning with CAPA is a great opportunity to go beyond the stage and learn about the arts from the inside out.
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CAPA is thankful to its team of photographers who are hard at work showing off the beauty of our historic theatres.