Capri featured by MN Theater Alliance

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“We have a beautiful, 250-seat auditorium meant to serve North Minneapolis and it’s our goal to be a hub, a destination that draws art from around the region and brings it to the Northside.”- Karl Reichert, Director of the Capri Theater

The Capri Theater was the “June Member Feature” for the Minnesota Theater Alliance’s website and newsletter. For the past seven-and-a-half years I have been working in North Minneapolis with amazing artists (including our artistic associates Dennis W. Spears, Kevin D. West and Greta Oglesby) and the Plymouth Christian Youth Center board, staff and volunteers to build develop an old movie house built in 1927 into a vibrant performing arts venue on West Broadway.

Click here to read the full feature by Ashley Hanson of the Minnesota Theater Alliance. 

Minnesota Theater Alliance

June Member Feature
The Capri Theater
Minneapolis, MN

By Ashley Hanson

The Capri Theater, built in 1927 as one of 13 movie houses in North Minneapolis, was originally called Logan Theater. In 1933 the building was renovated and the name was changed to The Paradise Theater, which it held until 1967 when it underwent a third renovation, receiving the name The Capri Theater.

The Plymouth Christian Youth Center (PCYC), originally based in the Plymouth Hotel on Plymouth Avenue, needed a new home when I-94 came through North Minneapolis. They purchased a commercial building on Oliver Avenue, just behind the Capri Theater on West Broadway in the late 1960s.

After running its contract alternative high school with Minneapolis Public Schools out of this house, the acquisition of the Capri Theater in the mid 1980s, the high school was moved to the Capri Theater in 1992, and the auditorium was rented to  American Variety Theater., a 4-H Extension  program for urban youth. After PCYC added new academic buildings to its campus from 2001 to 2004, a new vision for the Capri Theater started to take shape.

In 2007, PCYC launched its “Capri Theater Renaissance” – a strategic plan to “bring the lights up on West Broadway by renovating the Capri and expanding its artistic offerings.” This was an initiative championed by City of Minneapolis leaders, particularly Mayor R.T. Rybak, to utilize the arts as an important resource in the redevelopment of West Broadway.

It was at this time that PCYC hired a dream team to execute their strategic plan – Karl Reichert, and artistic associates Dennis W. Spears, and Kevin D. West. Karl, the Director of the Capri Theater, shared that they were charged with two major goals: 1) to re-develop the venue and determine how to make it more viable as a performing arts venue locally, regionally and nationally; and 2) to build upon existing PCYC values and programs to bring more art to the Capri and the Northside. (Click here to read more.)

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