COLUMBUS -- Originally known as the Ogden Theatre and Ballroom, the Lincoln Theatre opened on Thanksgiving Day 1929.
For four decades, the surrounding King-Lincoln District was an affluent and vibrant African-American community that frequented the Lincoln for performances from such jazz legends as Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Miles Davis, Etta James, and Columbus native Nancy Wilson.
The Lincoln’s second-floor ballroom, originally known as the Ogden Club and later renamed the Lincoln Ballroom, also became one of the most popular venues in the country for live jazz.
While African-American artists could perform in downtown Columbus venues, the racial segregation of the time required performers be housed in King-Lincoln hotels.
This ultimately resulted in many jazz greats finding their way to the Ogden Club late at night, after their downtown engagements, to perform a second, impromptu show for unsuspecting second-floor patrons.
In 2020, the Lincoln Theatre Association will reopen the second-floor ballroom as Club Lincoln, a performance space offering an organic and intimate experience that can accommodate 150-250 patrons in a variety of general admission seating configurations, including traditional theatre-style, performance in the round, or club-style.
The ballroom has been equipped with an all-new digital sound and lighting system and been fitted with acoustical panels to improve sound quality.
In addition, the Lincoln Theatre Association will launch the Club Lincoln concert series as a platform for burgeoning local artists that have participated in the Lincoln’s artist incubation programs.
Club Lincoln will offer a new, mid-level transition point from Backstage at the Lincoln (which seats 100) and the main stage (which seats 580). A Club Lincoln concert schedule will be announced at a later date.
“We are excited to take this space back to its roots and offer it to the community as a destination for quality, live music once again,” Lincoln Theatre Executive Director Suzan Bradford said.
“Club Lincoln will take our talented Lincoln incubation artists to the next level, allowing them the opportunity for more creativity and larger audiences," Bradford said.
Beginning in 2020, Club Lincoln will also become available for rent. For more information, please contact Elena Perantoni at email@example.com.
The Club Lincoln concert series is made possible through a grant from the Greater Columbus Arts Council, the City of Columbus, and Franklin County Board of Commissioners.