Mayor Bell has high hopes for the Lyric Theatre's restoration

Mayor Bell has high hopes for the Lyric Theatre's restoration

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Mayor Bell at the Lyric Theatre (Source: WBRC video) Mayor Bell at the Lyric Theatre (Source: WBRC video)
An undated photo of the Lyric Theatre in downtown Birmingham. Source: WBRC video An undated photo of the Lyric Theatre in downtown Birmingham. Source: WBRC video
The renovated Lyric Theatre sign. Source: WBRC video The renovated Lyric Theatre sign. Source: WBRC video
Interior of the Lyric Theatre. Source: WBRC video Interior of the Lyric Theatre. Source: WBRC video
Interior of the Lyric Theatre. Source: WBRC video Interior of the Lyric Theatre. Source: WBRC video
BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) -

The Lyric Theatre in Birmingham, once home to vaudeville shows, is on its way back to life.

For more than a year, the theater has undergone major renovations to light up the theater district once again.

Mayor William Bell was one of many people who filled the lobby of the historic theater Thursday morning.

"It's got good bones," said Mayor Bell as he scanned the building.

Mayor Bell said he can remember visiting the Lyric Theatre as a kid. He vividly remembers having to go through a separate door because of the color of his skin.

"We would have to sit up in the balcony," Bell said.

It's interesting now that he's the one who's holding press conferences talking about the future of the theater. Times have changed and so has the theater.

Bruce Adams is part of the construction process and said peeling back the layers of the design has been interesting.

"On the plaster, a lot of the reinforcement plaster horse hair or jut and in some areas, other parts used a lot of decorative plaster. Some used pine straw for reinforcing," Adams said.

But plans are on track. Adams and his team have the complete construction documents and they hope to take bids on work next month.

Also, the $7 million needed to be raised for the project has been met. While the interior may look a little rough now, the fruition of the work will hopefully be music to the city's ears.

"This gives an opportunity to rekindle Birmingham's rightful place in the theatrical production throughout the country," Bell said.

The theater is projected to open at the end of August of 2015.

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