The multi-million dollar renovation of the historic Bethesda Theater is near completion, shows are selling out and an introductory press conference for the Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club is set for Tuesday with a tour and food samples from a menu that features entrees ranging from $18 to $35.
The venue says its goal is to become the D.C. region’s No. 1 live music supper club. Residents and county officials have anticipated its opening since last year. Its 1930′s era marquee, sitting prominently on Wisconsin Avenue in downtown Bethesda, is lit up and 300 table seats and a 40-foot bar await inside.
But can the Club succeed, especially in a place with a struggling live music scene and little tradition of venues of a similar scale?
“I think it’s a visionary idea because if you take a look at the area between D.C. and Strathmore, there’s nothing in terms of being able to present jazz and blues and other types of music like it,” said Charlie Fishman, founder and president of the D.C. Jazz Festival and a friend of Blues and Jazz Club director of operations Ralph Camilli. “So I think it’s a really excellent idea. If it works, who knows?”