In this case, the figurative fat lady sang not to signify the ending but the beginning.
The Nashville Opera today unveiled the design plans for its new home in Sylvan Park, a year later than initially planned so the organization made sure it had more than enough money to start construction.
D.F. Chase Construction is scheduled to begin work on the $6-million Noah Liff Opera Center, named for the late Nashville businessman, on Monday. The goal is to be in the 26,000-square-foot center new next fall and become a new neighbor to Nashville Ballet and Climb Nashville on Redmon Street.
To pay for construction, the opera announced that it has raised $9 million, most of which covers the center’s construction. The rest will be part of a fund to expand the opera’s educational and outreach programs along with an additional $3 million the opera hopes to raise through a public campaign starting now.
The Opera originally planned to have been in the new space this fall but took a long time on the “silent phase” of the fundraising in order to raise more. Judy Liff Barker, Noah Liff’s widow now married to developer Joe Barker, kicked off the drive with a lead gift. Martha Ingram also donated to the cause.
With the new center designed by Earl Swensson Associates, the opera will have a permanent home, the only performing arts entity in Nashville that hasn't had one.
The opera still will perform at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. But the new facility will give it room for rehearsal, education and offices. It also will be open for special events and corporate meetings. The opera also would do some smaller, special performances at the center.