New Albany's amphitheater expected to debut in summer 2021

SARAH SOLE
ssole@thisweeknews.com
The New Albany amphitheater is planned adjacent to the Jeanne B. McCoy Community Center for the Arts at 100 W. Dublin-Granville Road and the New Albany-Plain Local School District campus, as seen in this file photo from August 2019.

Construction of the amphitheater planned adjacent to New Albany's Jeanne B. McCoy Community Center for the Arts is expected to take about a year.

The project is slated to be finished next summer after beginning this month, said Craig Mohre, president of the New Albany Community Foundation.

The architecture firm for the amphitheater is DLR Group Westlake Reed Leskosky, and the construction firm is Corna Kokosing Construction Co., Mohre said.

The amphitheater will be on land owned by the New Albany-Plain Local School District and leased to the city. The lease, signed in August 2019 for $10, has a 50-year term, said city spokesman Scott McAfee.

The facility will share an address with the McCoy, 100 W. Dublin-Granville Road, according to Mohre.

The Columbus Association for the Performing Arts will manage programming at the amphitheater; CAPA has been involved in the management of the McCoy since 2013.

Planning and fundraising for the amphitheater started in 2016. In recognition of the Hinson family's early $500,000 donation toward the project, the venue will be named the Charleen & Charles Hinson Amphitheater, according to Mohre.

The amphitheater will cost $7 million, Mohre said. The community foundation has raised about $5.5 million, and it is taking out loans for the rest, he said.

Mohre said community foundation leaders are unsure whether to add programs for the summer 2021 season because of uncertainty during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

"We want to see what transpires this year with the pandemic and allow ourselves flexibility to decide whether or not to program anything or not for the summer of 2021," he said.

However, the amphitheater is an outdoor venue, Mohre said, and, as such, it might be less intimidating for visitors than an indoor venue, he said.

Heather Garner, director of the New Albany Symphony Orchestra, said if the orchestra is able to have live performances next year, a patriotic concert is slated over the July 4 weekend at the amphitheater, though a time and date are to be determined.

Garner said the symphony orchestra also is planning 12 summer chamber-music performances next summer throughout Rose Run Park, which is across Dublin-Granville Road from the amphitheater site.

ssole@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekSarah