Chattanooga’s premier performance venues include the historic Tivoli Theatre, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium, and Robert Kirk Walker Community Theatre. For over 90 years, these City of Chattanooga Civic Facilities have served as the hub of the Performing Arts in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Civic Facilities serves over 200,000 patrons annually with the finest in entertainment and cultural events such as full-scale Broadway and theatrical productions, music concerts, comedy snows, as well as community events. Civic Facilities provides low-cost opportunities for over 30,000 students from Hamilton County and surrounding counties to experience education through the arts at the city’s three venues. For many of these students, this is their first time visiting a fine performance venue like the Tivoli Theatre to experience symphony music or a science stage show.
Contributing to a Growing Economy
According the Americans for the Arts “Arts & Economic Prosperity IV” study of the greater Chattanooga area, Arts and Culture audiences account for $65.6 million annually in events-related spending in Chattanooga, and this amount excludes the cost of admission.
Civic Facilities’ $1.7 million operating budget maintains not one but three historic venues, one of which was nearly lost to decay and disrepair as a privately-owned building.
These three facilities provide 100 plus jobs to outside contractors and over $400,000 in work for local businesses such as security, stagehands, and concessionaires.
Civic Facilities provides an estimated $800,000 plus in city revenues and an additional $200,000 plus in sales tax revenues supporting local infrastructure and economic growth.
Each year, Civic Facilities leaves nearly a $5 million residual economic impact through 1) Preservation and electronic ticketing fees, 2) Concession Sales (30% to City), 3) Merchandise, 4) Parking, 5) Downtown Dining, 6) Hotel Occupancy, and 7) Sales tax.
Civic Facilities works with and incentivizes local and national promoters by charging both fixed and variable rates, and occasionally, if a show loses, Civic Facilities staff helps soften impact by reducing staffing and associated costs.
Bound by restrictions set forth by city policy and by limited funding, Civic Facilities serve as venues for local and occasional outside entertainment in addition to offering non-profit rates for community events and fundraisers, a home to the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera (Civic Facilities main client), and venues for nearly all local Graduation Ceremonies.
Offering A Top Choice Location for Broadway Tour Launches
With nine Broadway launches since 2006, Chattanooga’s Civic Facilities, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium & Tivoli
Theatre, have become popular venues for launching national Broadway tours. Recently, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast launched in September at the Tivoli Theatre. On the heels of this success, the producers of West Side Story chose historic Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium for their national launch in November. While cast and crew live and work on location for two to three weeks to prepare for tour, these launches leave a positive influence on Chattanooga creating a unique cultural opportunity and altogether more than a $3 million economic impact.
Recent Broadway tour launches:
Dr. Dolittle (2006)
Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (2006)
The Wizard of Oz (2009)
Legally Blonde (2010)
Fiddler on the Roof (2010)
White Christmas (2010)
Sister Act (2012)
Disney’s Beauty & the Beast (2013)
West Side Story (2013)