From Blight to Stage Right: A Damaged House in Detroit’s Future as a Performance Art Space

House Opera | Opera House tells a different tale about Detroit’s vacant properties.

“It’s not a house that can easily be repurposed into a living space that’s safe and comfortable, but what can we do is take away that can make it valuable for the neighborhood, and hopefully the city.”

Mitch McEwen, Principal Architect of House Opera | Opera House 

There are 90,000 vacant residential lots in Detroit. That’s one in every four properties in the city. A group of artists and architects are responding by taking a blighted house in southwest Detroit and transforming it into a performance art space called House Opera | Opera HouseMitch McEwen is the principal architect of the project and owner of the property. She spoke with WDET’s Eli Newman about the unlikely genesis of the House Opera.


Courtesy of House Opera | Opera House



  • Eli Newman
    Eli Newman is a Reporter/Producer for 101.9 WDET, covering breaking news, politics and community affairs. His favorite Motown track is “It’s The Same Old Song” by the Four Tops.