Paint Palette, New England Paint Palettes

Painting an Icon:
The Music Hall of Portsmouth, New Hampshire

In 1878, the Music Hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire opened its doors as a vaudeville theater, so when we were asked to paint it, we considered it a privilege to restore beauty to the building that has brought so much art, life, and joy to the people of New Hampshire.

Everyone loves behind-the-scenes insights, so we asked our own Dave Pine about the challenges, the story, the process, and why painting the Music Hall was a project that was close to his heart.

What was unique about painting the Music Hall for you?

My great-grandfather came to Portsmouth and was stationed at Fort Constitution. My grandmother grew up here, first working at the Button Factory then at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. Portsmouth is in my blood!

It was an amazing experience connecting with the community restoring a place that was meant to bring the community together in the first place. I like to think my family is proud of adding to the legacy of the city.

What are some of the challenges you faced in painting this historic building?

We had to reach the top of the building using 40-foot articulating aerial lifts, plus navigating around power lines, adjacent buildings, and protecting the fragile hand-blown glass vintage marquee that was virtually irreplaceable. Plus, the theater was still open while we did all this—we had our work cut out for us!

How did you work with the client?

We partnered with CFO Patricia Lynch and the Director of Operations, Michael Tucker to develop a strategy and execution that would keep the project on budget and on time We were able to do both.

What made this project so memorable?

So many people stopped to watch, take pictures, share anecdotes about the history. It really was such a proud day for the Portsmouth Painting Company.