RBTL announces partnership with West Herr Automotive Group

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Maybe you saw the billboards around town that teased a big announcement by the Rochester Broadway Theatre League.

This is it: A new naming sponsor that will help sustain the Broadway shows and educational programs at RBTL.

The Auditorium Theatre on East Main Street is now the West Herr Auditorium Theatre and Performing Arts Center. Because it’s a private operation, RBTL wouldn’t say how much the sponsorship is for, but RBTL chair Arnie Rothschild said it is “significant.”

“I walk slowly, but I don’t walk backwards.”

That’s Arnie Rothschild quoting Abraham Lincoln, recognizing the long and winding road it took RBTL to get here. So many different ideas, projects and locations over the years. And now a new name for the same old spot.

“As of today, you are standing in front of the West Herr Auditorium Theatre and Performing Arts Center,” Rothschild said.

Scott Bieler, West Herr president and CEO, said: “There’s a reason we made this commitment to the city of Rochester and to this historic institution. It’s simply to repay, in a small way, the amazing support the people of Rochester have given us.”

RBTL bought the entire complex in the spring. It started a $12.5 million renovation. That’s stage one.

In addition to the new name, the Auditorium, now the West Herr Auditorium Theatre and Performing Arts Center, is going through some major renovations costing millions and millions of dollars. A lot of it is in the infrastructure of the building like new elevators. But some of it is on the outside, including a new entrance on the east side of the building. That is starting now and will continue over the next few years.