KCRW’s benefit concert, and there are some tickets still available. KCRW’s Beth Topping wrote this reminder about why the building is just one more good reason (in addition to Jimmy Cliff, Iron and Wine and a host of other great performers) to attend our concert:
At 85 years old, The Orpheum is youngest of the historic theaters in the Broadway theater district of downtown Los Angeles. It was the last vaudeville house in Los Angeles that was part of the famous Orpheum Circuit — a group of 45 theaters (the earliest of which was built in the late 19th century) in the United States that featured the greatest vaudeville performers, singers and stars of its day. In it’s heyday, The Orpheum hosted everyone from Judy Garland (then of the Gumm Sisters), to Jack Benny and Lena Horne. The Beaux Arts building was designed by movie theater architect G. Albert Lansburgh (who also designed The Palace Theatre, The Wiltern, El Capitain and the Shrine Auditorium, all in Los Angeles). After a $3 million dollar renovation that began in 1989, it is a beautifully-restored piece of entertainment and architectural history — one of the great gems in Los Angeles.
The photos of the auditorium (above left, by Don Solosan) and the lobby (right, by Larry Underhill) were shared with us by the Los Angeles Conservancy, longtime advocate for the Broadway theater district. And this Sunday they will hold their sixth annual holiday film matinee — Miracle on 34th Street — at the equally fabulous Million Dollar Theater.