Photo by mk30

The Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts (formerly the Alice Arts Center, and originally built as the Oakland Women's City Club) is a historic building in the Lakeside Apartments District that is currently a performance and art space operated by Oakland Parks and Recreation.

Check out some of the awesome things that happen here!

The Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts was the recipient of the East Bay Express Best Cultural Center Readers' Poll Award in 2014.

Location

1428 Alice Street.
Oakland, CA 94612
510-238-7217

Present Day

The Center holds classes and performances that serve as many as 50,000 people a year. It also acts as a home for artists in resident who occupy 74 SRO rooms on the upper floors of the Center2.

The full schedule of MCCA's many classes can be viewed here: Malonga Casquelourd< Center for the Arts http://mccatheater.com/?page_id=85

History

The building originally known as the Women's City Club of Oakland was designed by the firm of Miller and Warnecke, and built in 1927-1928. Although the building was purchased in 1939 by developers that intended to combine this building with the Hill Castle Apartment Hotel into a single large hotel, the Club continued to use the building until 1948. Other groups that met in the building included the Alameda County Birth Control League and the Oakland Opera Lecture Club. Beginning in 1948, the building was occupied by the Oakland Moose Lodge. It eventually was converted into a residential hotel, and then was purchased by the City and converted to a theater and arts center in the late 1980s.

The Mediterranean-style building held banquet halls, an underground swimming pool, rooftop tennis courts and a 1,000-seat theater.

The city signed a 20-year lease-to-buy option on the property in 1986 and turned it into the Alice Club Hotel and Arts Center. The city paid about $8 million to renovate the building in 1993, changing the name to Alice Arts Center."1

In 2004, Councilmember Nancy Nadel sponsored the name change of the building to the Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts after Malonga Casquelourd, a Cameroonian dancer, choreographer, dance instructor, and founder of the Citicenter Dance Theater and Fua Dia Congo, a nonprofit performing arts company1.

On June 7, 2005 the Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts (Women's City Club, Alice Arts Center) was designated Oakland Landmark #138, under Zoning Case #LM05-066.

CC SA-BY Our Oakland

Links and References

Oakland Tribune 1,2

  1. Club Leaders Lay Cornerstone Oakland Tribune August 20, 1928

  2. Women's City Club Lays Cornerstone of New Home Oakland Tribune August 20, 1928