The owners of Minneapolis venue First Avenue have just announced their local expansion with the purchase of Fine Line Music Cafe. The acquisition marks First Avenue’s growing presence in Minnesota which already includes ownership of downtown danceteria First Avenue, the Turf Club on University Avenue, and co-management of the Palace Theatre in downtown St. Paul.
“We’re incredibly excited to add the Fine Line to the First Avenue family, and really — more importantly — to keep this local venue independently owned and operated,” said First Avenue owner Dayna Frank in a press release.
First Avenue will take over control of the Fine Line Music Cafe on Oct. 1 and First Avenue general manager Nate Kranza said in the release “there are no immediate major changes planned” for the new acquisition.
Kranza added: “We are really eager to get in there, assess the room, and start to make scaled improvements. We want to put the First Avenue mark on it, and we want to do it right.”
The Fine Line is located in the heart of the Warehouse District in downtown Minneapolis. The club is in the main level of the historic Consortium building, which was built in 1907. Originally opened as a music venue in 1987, the Fine Line has hosted thousands of influential acts over their 30-plus year history, including the Pixies, Buddy Guy, and Lady Gaga. The 650-capacity room is a uniquely-sized venue, offering a platform for up-and-coming artists, and intimate underplays for major acts.
First Avenue has been promoting shows at the new venue for nearly 20 years and said future bookings will be live-music driven, with the addition of dance parties, live comedy, and live podcasting performances. Upcoming September shows include toe., Japanese Breakfast, ABBARAMA, Blitzen Trapper, Frankie Cosmos, and HONNE.
The company also promotes concerts and events at numerous venues in Minnesota, including but not limited to, Amsterdam Bar & Hall, The Cedar Cultural Center, The Historic State, Orpheum, and Pantages Theatres in Minneapolis, and the Fitzgerald Theater in Saint Paul, as well as Surly Brewing Festival Field.
Early this year, First Avenue also signed on to become the operator of a new amphitheater on the Mississippi riverfront at the Upper Harbor Terminal in North Minneapolis. The Upper Harbor Terminal Community Performing Arts Center (CPAC) is expected to break ground in 2021 and hold 6,000 fixed seats, lawn space, and hold 10,000 attendees total. The CPAC will be the only amphitheater within city limits.