118 5th Avenue North, La Crosse, WI, US
Bio: A historic theater located in downtown La Crosse, Wisconsin. It originally housed the 5th Avenue Theater from the 1930s through the early 1960s in the era of lavish movie palaces being built to see the idols of the silver screen. Under new ownership, the building became an upscale dinner theater French restaurant with Las Vegas style entertainment for several years in the early to mid 1960s before being taken over by the award winning La Crosse Community Theatre in 1967. From the late 1960s until December of 2012 when LCT drew it's final curtain before moving to their newly built home on the riverfront, hundreds of productions of plays crossed the stage and became an institution for the thriving local arts community. The building was sold to Portland, Oregon transplant Jason LaCourse, who'd been a programming director/DJ for a free form radio station and worker at an iconic music venue, the WOW Hall in Eugene, Oregon for many years. Jason, who two years previous, had purchased and managed the equally historic upscale art deco cocktail speakeasy that is adjoining the Theater, the Cavalier Lounge, bought the Theater with a vision to turn the space into a top tier mid sized music venue that seats 260 with a standing room of 450/500. With a stage befitting of old vaudeville productions, the Cavalier is open to bookings across all genres. Jason also converted the former scene shop of the Theater into a smaller feeder stage area with a raw underground rock and roll vibe for concerts that draw under 80, as well hosting acoustic concerts on the small stage of the relaxed laid back atmosphere of the Lounge that once housed a young, pre famous Liberace as the nightly piano player in the 1940s.