Landmark Albany Theater Building Up For Auction

All Over Albany has reported that the 101-year-old EBA, short for Electric Body Arts, theater building, located on the corner of Lark and Hudson in Albany, is up for sale by online auctioneers Collar City Auctions.

EBA founder Maude Baum, purchased the building in 1977, from the Daughters of the Eastern Star, and has been running dance classes out of the building ever since, making it one of the staples of the community. Although this era is coming to a close, Baum states that the company will continue.

Baum talked about the current situation:

There are lots of places to hold classes, there are lots of places to perform, there are lots of places to rehearse. I’m OK with it. I’m sort of at the point where it’s time for a change.

The building was up for auction a while back, but developers only wanted the land, not the building. They discovered that their original plans of demolishing the building, wouldn’t be cost effective according to Baum. She stated:

It’s built like a Mack truck. The beams are 15-inch metal studs so it’s structurally sound. It’s in excellent shape. We just finished shingling, there’s a new boiler, and a new tin ceiling in the theater.

Before considering the online auction route, the company was turned down for a state Main Street grant, hoping to add apartments and offices to the building.

EBA is still holding regular scheduled rehearsals, performances and classes until the bidding closes on March 2, with an assessed value of $518,400, according to city tax records. After that, Baum and her board of directors are up for any ideas, opportunities, and possibilities.

Baum on the future of the building:

Who knows, maybe someone will buy the building and want to lease the space back to us, or share it with us somehow. Anything could happen.

Everything that has happened here is still in my heart — All the artwork and performances — They’re still inside of me. What’s the difference if you look at a photo here or you look at it someplace else.