Nashville Municipal Auditorium

Nashville Municipal Auditorium
Nashville Municipal Auditorium
Location 417 Fourth Avenue North
Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Coordinates 36°10′03.29″N 86°46′56.08″W / 36.1675806°N 86.7822444°W / 36.1675806; -86.7822444Coordinates: 36°10′03.29″N 86°46′56.08″W / 36.1675806°N 86.7822444°W / 36.1675806; -86.7822444
Broke ground 1959
Built 1959-1962
Opened October 7, 1962
Renovated 1993
Owner Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County, Tennessee
Operator Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County, Tennessee
Surface concrete
Construction cost $5 million dollars
Capacity 9,700 in the round, 8,000 (basketball), 9,432 reserved in the round
Field dimensions Hockey - 85x185 ft
Basketball - 120x60 ft
OVC Men's & Women's Basketball Tournament

Nashville Knights
Nashville South Stars
Nashville Dixie Flyers
Nashville Ice Flyers
Built Ford Tough Series
Belmont Bruins men's basketball
OVC Tournament
Nashville Noise

The Nashville Municipal Auditorium (NMA) (informally known locally as Municipal Auditorium, or simply Municipal) is an indoor sports and concert venue in Nashville, Tennessee. Constructed in 1962, the Auditorium was the first public assembly facility in the Mid-South with air-conditioning.[1]


Popular venue for touring family shows

Having served the greater Nashville area with many diverse events for almost 50 years, today the Auditorium is a popular venue in Nashville for major touring family shows, such as Sesame Street Live, The Wiggles, The Doodlebops, Barney, Bob the Builder,Disney Live, Harlem Globetrotters, and the annual Al Menah Temple Shrine Circus.


The venue continues to serve niche concert markets, such as alternative rock, rock 'n' roll, heavy metal, pop, R&B, urban, oldies and Hispanic concerts.

The NMA is the only Nashville entertainment venue to host pop singer Michael Jackson. He performed with The Jackson 5 on December 29, 1970, January 1 and August 6, 1972 and August 8, 1973.

In 1967, the auditorium accommodated the Country Music Association's first CMA Awards festivities, before the ceremonies moved to the Grand Ole Opry House the following year.

Due to the damage incurred to the Grand Ole Opry House during the May 2010 Tennessee floods, the NMA hosted the June 8, 2010 edition of the Grand Ole Opry. [2] NMA also hosted an Opry show in 1973.

The walls of the upper and lower concourses are decorated with enlarged ticket stubs for events and concerts the auditorium has hosted between the venue's debut in 1962 and 2010.

Songwriting legend Bob Dylan, who had previously recorded three important albums in Nashville, performed at the venue with his band in 2010.

Religious events

The Auditorium is also a popular venue for religious events, having hosted Mt. Zion Baptist Church New Day Conference, Teenmania's Acquire the Fire, Dare 2 Share Ministries, and the Tennessee Baptist Convention Youth Evangelism Conference. Its first-ever event was a city-wide Church of Christ gospel meeting.

Sporting events

Strikeforce Challengers 13, a mixed martial arts event, was held in the building on January 7, 2011.

The NMA hosted the 1994 United States Gymnastic Championships as well as the 1996 Tour of World Figure Skating Championships. The Auditorium has hosted minor league hockey, with the teams known as the Dixie Flyers, South Stars, Knights, Nighthawks, and Nashville Ice Flyers. It has also hosted minor league basketball - Stars and Jammers, and women's professional basketball - Noise. It was a home court for the Belmont University basketball teams while Striplin Gym was being rebuilt into Curb Event Center. Additionally, the NMA has hosted several Ohio Valley Conference basketball tournaments, and the Auditorium hosted the OVC again in 2008. Beginning in 2011-2015, the NMA will host the men's and women's OVC basketball tournaments in a new four day tournament format. The capacity is set around 8,000 during these tournaments.

Many Professional wrestling events were hosted in the arena including the NWA's Wrestle War 89 which featured a world title change and match of the year candidate in Ric Flair vesus Ricky Steamboat. It also was the home for the World Wrestling Federation's No Holds Barred: The Match/The Movie PPV special held in December 1989 as well as the World Wrestling Federation's second In Your House PPV in 1995, and TNA Slammiversary in June 2007. It was a favorite venue over the years for World Championship Wrestling, which hosted its supercard show Starrcade there from 1994 to 1996 and its final Clash of the Champions show there in 1997. Total Nonstop Action Wrestling held their first events there June 2002 before moving to the Tennessee State Fairgrounds.

The Music City Stars, then known as the Nashville Broncs, an American Basketball Association expansion team, began its inaugural season at the NMA in November 2008.

The Professional Bull Riders association hosted a Built Ford Tough Series event at this venue from its inception in 1994 until 2001 (during this era the BFTS was known as the Bud Light Cup). In 2002, the event was moved to the Gaylord Entertainment Center (later the Sommet Center). The NMA hosted Tuff Hedeman's CBR All-Star Shoot-Out on June 10, 2009 and again in 2010.

It is currently home to the Nashville Rollergirls, a flat track roller derby league, and a member of the Women's Flat Track Derby Association.

Musician's Hall of Fame and Museum

Sometime in 2012, the auditorium will begin housing the Musician's Hall of Fame and Museum. The museum was forced from its previous building as a result of the construction of the Music City Center. The Hall of Fame will move into the sparsely-used Exhibit Hall on the bottom floor of the Auditorium building, and the official name of the entire building will change to Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum at Nashville Municipal Auditorium.[3]


The following photos are from the Auditorium's inaugural event: a Churches of Christ Gospel Meeting in 1962.


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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