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National Black Theatre

New York, New York

Client: National Black Theatre
Architect: Marvel Architects
Anticipated Completion: 2026

A new mixed-use project on 126th Street and Fifth Avenue will become the new home for the National Black Theatre (NBT), the oldest continually-running Black theater in New York City. Founded in 1968 by visionary Dr. Barbara Ann Teer, NBT presented productions by, and about, Black Americans.

The project will include a multi-floor theater for NBT, retail, and over 200 units of mixed-income apartments above. The new building will ensure that the NBT, a vital community resource, will be able to serve and inspire future generations of artists and entrepreneurs.

The project integrates West African mythology, ritual, and symbolism into the design. The pink-red brick references the Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove in Nigeria, honoring the original artisans behind the NBT space. A “Living Room” at the ground floor corner of 126th and Fifth Avenue will be open to the public and serve as a community gathering space.