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The New Orleans Theater of the Performing Arts opened in January of 1973 in Louis Armstrong Park, in New Orleans, Louisiana. After two decades of hosting world class theatre, opera, dance and musical performances, the City Council voted in 1993 to rename the venue the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts in honor of the famed and beloved New Orleans gospel singer. Hurricane Katrina ravaged the venue in 2005. Over 14 feet of water entered the facility damaging mechanical systems, dressing facilities and theatre equipment. Under the leadership of Mayor C. Ray Nagin, the 2,178 seat theatre was awarded new life by virtue of over $30 million dollars in repairs and improvements. Today, the Mahalia Jackson is operated by ACE and is the self-sustaining home to the New Orleans Opera Association, the New Orleans Ballet Association, and a wide variety of performing arts attractions.