It took less than two years to build the magnificent theatres that make up PlayhouseSquare. In 1921 and 1922, a theatre-building boom took place in just a few short blocks along Euclid Avenue in downtown Cleveland, with theaters that boasted a dizzying range of entertainment from vaudeville to grand opera.
The theaters fell on hard times in the ’60s and were threatened with demolition. They continued to host concerts sporadically throughout the ’70s ranging from the Jacksons to the New York Dolls to Engelbert Humperdinck as the effort to preserve them snowballed. Finally, by the early ’80s, a major restoration effort was underway that reopened all the theaters.
There are currently nine theaters of different sizes in Playhouse Square, making it the largest U.S. entertainment complex beside Lincoln Center in New York City.
Playhouse Square theatres include:
* Connor Palace Theatre
* Allen Theatre
* Hanna Theatre
* Helen Rosenfeld Lewis Bialowsky Lab Theatre
* Ohio Theatre
* Kennedy’s Cabaret
* State Theatre
* Outcalt Theatre
* Westfield Insurance Studio Theatre
The Playhouse Square theatres are also home to a number of resident companies:
* Cleveland Play House (Allen Theatre)
* Cleveland State University Department of Theatre and Dance (Allen Theatre)
* Great Lakes Theatre (Hanna Theatre)
* Tri-C Jazz Fest
* ideastream (WVIZ, WCPN, WCLV)
And with so much going on, the neighborhood has attracted a luxury hotel and a growing number of dining options from quick-eats places to white-tablecloth dining.