;;; ; ;;;;;;;, play or painting save a
historic building from the wrecking ball?
In New Jersey, yes. Centuries-old buildings have been converted into performance
spaces, preserving the past while revitalizing the arts scene in local communities.
It’s not unusal for an historic building
to maintain its original function after a
renovation, says Glenn Ceponis, principal
historic-preservation specialist at the New
Jersey Historic Trust. Historic homes, for
example, are typically transformed into up-
dated homes. Reenvisioning a building as a
performance space, he says, is less common,
but is especially appropriate in communi-
ties lacking a theater or concert hall.
Being able to experience historic build-
ings helps people understand how we
developed as a nation, says Dorothy Guzzo,
executive director of the Historic Trust.
“Having that past all around you helps you
face the future.”
On these pages are four examples of
buildings reborn as performance spaces.
THE ARTS TO THE RESCUE
BY MARLAINA COCKCROFT | ILLUSTRATIONS BY GARY HOVLAND
Historic buildings enjoy new lives as performance venues.