In an interview with Michael Heaton of the Plain Dealer, the Beachland Ballroom’s Cindy Barber announced that she is looking to sell the venue. Before you panic, take time to read the quote. The Beachland isn’t closing, Barber is retaining ownership of the building, and she’s only looking to sell the operation to someone who’s passionate about keeping the Beachland’s reputation in tact:
While we’re not closing, we need someone with the financial and emotional capital to keep this the premier eclectic, alternative music club in the country. Musicians come through here and tell us we have the best concert schedule of any venue in the U.S. They know because they travel. We hear that again and again from bands.
This place requires a person with a lot of different talents. You have to have reverence for music history. We’ve brought in everything from classic country to punk rock. I don’t want someone to turn this place into a disco. It has to be your mission to want to bring cool music to the people of Cleveland. That’s why we got into this in the first place. To do this right a person would need a few hundred thousand.
Running this place is like being a curator of popular music. We’re fans. You have to be a fan. One of the first acts Mark booked here was the White Stripes. They used to stay at his house when they came to town. But then we’ve also become friends with Bobby Rush, who is a precious part of music history. Sometimes the job is about finding older acts who are coming out on the road again.
The bottom line is you have to do this for the love of music. But having a lot of capital helps. Whoever buys it has to have more capital than we do now. We own the building, so we would probably just sell the business and rent the building to them.