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Architectural Detail Experts | A Blog by Worthington Millwork

Custom Moulding for Lyric Theatre in Birmingham Alabama

Posted by Holli McRae on 10/10/13 8:52 AM

Lyric TheatreThe Lyric Theatre, found in Birmingham, Alabama, is a historical theatre that was built in 1914 for B.F. Keith’'s Vaudeville circuit. According to a history write-up by “The Lyric Fine Arts Theater” website on wix.com, “Major stars such as the Marx Brothers, Mae West, Sophie Tucker, Will Rogers, and Milton Berle played the Lyric. Berle said it was ‘as fine a theater as any in New York.’”

The Lyric Theatre over the years has slowly diminished. However, the Board members of Birmingham Landmarks, Inc (the nonprofit group that owns both the Lyric and the restored Alabama Theatre across the street) pleaded for financial help to jumpstart larger fundraising efforts. Also a website was created for donating.

With much financial help the construction was underway. The exterior architectural details were to look as original as possible to bring back the theatre's glory days. The architect and contractor chose to use Worthington Millwork to replace the exterior façade and arch using a combination of polyurethane moulding to customize and achieve a very similar appearance to the original design. The product also has a limited lifetime warranty and will last a very long time.

The biggest manufacturing challenge in this project was to custom bend the moldings to the exact radius of the archway. This required very specific measurements from the architect and builder to ensure that once fabricated, in the polyurethane moldings, the radius of each part would match up. Due to the profile of the exterior cornice the molding configuration consisting of an arched radius and also a concave arch (just like a door jamb only curved.) This arched cornice on the façade is a total 17 individual polyurethane moldings that are stacked to shape a 5’ tall cornice. This arched cornice is mitered at the bottom of the arch on both sides into the same configuration which runs horizontally along the sides of the building in both directions. 

The redevelopment of the Lyric Theatre will provide a sense of pride for the community, empower those that have touched the project, and once again, foster stainable growth by providing a much needed energy/momentum for the community.


Building Supplies (custom exterior moulding): Worthington Millwork, LLC
Contractor: Williford Orman Construction
Architect: Lathan Associates Architects, P.C.

See the pdf drawings of the project- Click to view the drawings

Lyric Theatre Before and After

 

Photo credits: Frank Couch | fcouch@al.com

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Topics: Moldings, Commercial, Arches, Case Studies

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