2016 Theatre Tours

2017 Theatre Tours - Los Angeles, CA
2017 Theatre Tour information is tentative.
All venues, dates, times and order of visits subject to change.

All 2017 theatre tours are still being confirmed, but all the theatres we hope to visit are listed below. Confirmed venues are in blue and have more details below.

Pre-Conference Theatre Ramble, 07.16.17

Mayan Theater
Belasco Theater
The Wiltern
Saban Theatre
Wilshire Ebell Theatre
Million Dollar Theatre

Conference Theatre Tours, 07.18-19.17

Tuesday, July 18
El Capitan Theatre
TCL Chinese Theatre
Pantages Theatre
Egyptian Theatre
Theatre at Ace Hotel
Wednesday, July 19
Orpheum Theatre
Globe Theatre
Palace Theatre
Los Angeles Theatre

Last updated: 04.27.17


El Capitan Theatre


© Buena Vista Pictures Distribution.
All Rights Reserved.

Excerpted from the El Capitan's website

Step into Hollywood's glittering past and be treated to an unparalleled movie-going experience powered by the most advanced cinema innovations at The Walt Disney Studio's premiere cinema, The legendary El Capitan Theatre. This grand theatre made its debut on May 3, 1926, as "Hollywood's First Home of Spoken Drama." and has been fully restored to its original elegance, boasting a Spanish Colonial exterior and a colorful and lavish East Indian interior designed by San Francisco architect G. Albert Lansburgh. Here at the El Capitan Theatre you can experience the most advanced cinematic technology, such as the completely immersive Dolby ATMOS sound system featuring over 100 speakers, the super-bright Christie Solaria series digital projectors delivering crisp, clean images with perfect color, and ultra-realistic digital 3D powered by RealD. The El Capitan Theatre experience often includes exclusive preshow entertainment, prop & costume exhibits, and many other fun surprises!

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Globe Theatre

From the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation website

The Morosco Theatre opened on January 6, 1913, bringing full-length dramatic productions to LA's theatre district. Two of the greatest names in American theatre were involved in building and operating the theatre: Oliver Morosco and the Belasco family. In the Depression, the 1400-seat theatre was renamed The President, then switched from stage productions to movies and newsreels. Then, in 1947 the theatre was renamed the Globe. A brutal conversion to retail space in 1987 ended the theatre's 74 year run. After a run as the nightclub "Club 740," the house is now being partially restored as a multi-purpose performance venue.

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Los Angeles Theatre

Excerpted from the Los Angeles Theatre website

The Los Angeles Theatre was the last and most extravagant of the ornate movie palaces built on Broadway in downtown Los Angeles between 1911 and 1931. Designed by architect S. Charles Lee with a French Baroque-inspired décor, its majestic six-story main lobby and 2,200-seat auditorium of carved plaster ornamentation, mirrors, and cove-lit murals recall the glamorous days of 1930s Hollywood.

The Los Angeles Theatre, located in the heart of the downtown Los Angeles historic district at 615 S Broadway, is available for rental to a range of events including film screenings, stage performances, and special events such as parties, weddings, and receptions.

The auditorium holds 2,000 audience members on the orchestra and balcony levels. The grand lobby, ballroom and restaurant can accommodate an additional 2,000 patrons. These spaces, as well as other smaller spaces, are also available for more intimate gatherings.

The auditorium is equipped for live stage performances and film screenings. The lobby and ballroom are ideal for gatherings, parties, receptions, and weddings. The Theatre can accommodate your event or performance in the opulence of 1930s Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Theatre has been used extensively for filming. It holds unique locations unparalleled in Southern California. In addition to the auditorium and lobby, the Los Angeles Theatre offers many other engaging locations, such as marble-lined restrooms and a glass-ceilinged ballroom.

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Palace Theatre


Photo by Wendell Benedetti
Courtesy of Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation

Excerpted from the Palace Theatre website

The Palace Theatre, at 630 S Broadway, was built in 1911 as the third Los Angeles home of the Orpheum Vaudeville circuit. It was originally known as the "Orpheum" and is the oldest remaining Orpheum theatre in the country. Renamed the Palace Theatre in 1926, it became a silent movie house and later added sound. The theatre is now ready for a new century of performances and screenings.

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Pantages Theatre

Excerpted from the Pantages Theatre's website

In the heart of Hollywood, on Hollywood Boulevard, right down the block from Vine Street, stands the Hollywood Pantages Theatre. It's a fitting location: The Pantages has become one of the greatest landmarks of Hollywood, signifying both the glorious past and adventuresome future of the world's entertainment capital.

The Hollywood Pantages, which had its Grand Opening on June 4, 1930, has a history as grand and diverse as the stage and screen fare which audiences have flocked to enjoy there for half a century. These days it's one of Los Angeles' leading homes of legitimate theatre (the five highest-grossing weeks in L.A.'s theatrical history were all shows at the Pantages) and a favorite "location" for tv shows, movies and music videos. In the past, it has been a movie house, with live vaudeville acts between features as well as the site of many gala premieres and "spectaculars." For 10 years the Hollywood Pantages Theatre was the home of the glittering Academy Awards Presentations.

The Hollywood Pantages was primarily a movie house for several decades. In 1949 came Howard Hughes, acquiring the theatre through RKO, changing its name to the RKO Pantages and setting up offices there. (His upstairs apartment and screening room are today theatre offices, and Hughes' ghost is among several rumored to frequent the building once the audience leaves.)

Starting in 1953, television cameras brought the Oscars - and Hollywood Pantages Theatre - to America's living rooms. Its hosts included such notables as Fred Astaire, Danny Kaye, Bob Hope and Jerry Lewis. Frank Sinatra was honored as Best Supporting Actor in 1954, receiving one of eight Oscars awarded that year to "From Here to Eternity." Grace Kelly took home her award as Best Actress for "The Country Girl" in 1955, just a year before she left Hollywood to become Her Serene Highness, Princess Grace of Monaco.

Pacific Theatres bought the Hollywood Pantages from RKO in December 1967, leading to a refurbishment and reopening of the theatre sections closed down during the Hughes reign. The much-anticipated Music Center raised nearly $400,000 there in 1963 at a $250 per seat premiere of "Cleopatra."

In 1977, the Nederlander Organization came in as Pacific's partner and gave the Hollywood Pantages another overhaul before re-opening it as a legitimate theatre with "Bubbling Brown Sugar" in February 1977. When The Nederlander Organization heard that the Walt Disney Company was seeking a home for its Los Angeles production of "The Lion King", Chairman James M. Nederlander locked up a Pantages booking by agreeing to a substantial renovation. It was time, thought Nederlander, to get the theatre looking more like it did in 1930. The theatre was restored to its original luster in time for the highly-anticipated L.A. Premiere of Disney's THE LION KING.

While the use of the Hollywood Pantages Theatre may have changed over the years, the theatre does not appear all that different today. After several touch-ups over the years, the Hollywood Boulevard showplace was renovated at the turn of the 21st century to recapture its 1930 look and luxury. When the theatre reopened in September 2000, some 300 people had repainted nearly every inch of the theatre, restored its outer lobby and missing chandeliers, refurbished its walls and prepared it for the new century.


© Photo by John Linden

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Saban Theatre


Photo by Don Solosan
Courtesy of Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation

Excerpted from the Saban Theatre's website

Originally named the Fox Wilshire, opened its doors on September 19, 1930. Designed by renowned theater architect S. Charles Lee, the Fox Wilshire building serves as an interesting example of Lee's early Art Deco style. With its rich plaster work and heavy sculpture, this theatre is reminiscent of Lee's other early work like the Baroque masterpiece The Los Angeles Theater and the Tower. Lee would later become famous for his clean simple Art Deco lines with theaters like the Bruin and the Academy Theater.

Fox West Coast Theaters built Saban Theatre to house their first run feature films. For the first 50 years of its life, it served as one of the premiere movie palaces in Los Angeles and has hosted numerous premieres and special events. In November 1953, the premiere of "How to Marry A Millionaire" starring Marilyn Monroe and Lauren Bacall.

On Christmas Day of that year Walt Disney exhibited its new "Grand Canyonscope" – the first Donald Duck cartoon in Cinemascope which ran with the studio's classic feature "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea". Other notable events include 1960's special screening of "GI Blues" starring Elvis and attended by Ronald Reagan and the 1970's exclusive engagement of the film "Woodstock".

In 1981 the Wilshire Theatre was renovated and converted to a stage venue. For a number of years, the venue has hosted numerous theater productions and concerts including Billy Idol, Laurie Anderson, Mijares, Richard Pryor, Spandau Ballet, Kavert/Poogy, The National Ballet of Spain and A Mighty Wind, Billy Crystal's "700 Sundays" among others.

Now named Saban Theatre is open for theatrical rentals, concerts, television shoots, parties and more. It has seen many exciting productions including Billy Crystal's "700 Sundays," Chris Botti Live in Concert featuring Sting and Paula Cole, The Australian Pink Floyd Show and HBO's Def Comedy Jam featuring Dave Chappelle.

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TCL Chinese Theatre

Excerpted from the TCL Chinese Theatre's website

The TCL Chinese Theatre is the most iconic movie palace in the world. With over 50 events a year, including movie premieres, imprint ceremonies, and film festivals, the theatre continues to make Hollywood history every day.

On January 11, 2013, the world famous Chinese Theatre announced that they would be teaming up with one of China's biggest electronics manufacturers, TCL, aka "The Creative Life," in a 10-year naming rights partnership. This partnership has brought many exciting upgrades and preservation projects to the Chinese Theatre. For example, new sloped seating, new digital marquee, main lobby refurbishments and key technology upgrades sealing with both the audio and visual presentation. Not only do these enhancements bring the cherished venue back to the glory days when showman-founder Sid Grauman first opened the theatre, but they will also give the storied movie palace a new lease on life and provide theatre-goers with a much improved, truly world-class movie experience.

Since 1927, the TCL Chinese Theatre has been the home to the most prominent red carpet movie premieres and special events. It's where Hollywood's biggest and brightest stars come to watch their movies! The theatre has the unique Forecourt of the Stars, which features cement hand and footprints of major movie stars from past to present. These aspects make our cinema palace the most famous movie theatre in the world.

Our IMAX stands apart too. It's the world's largest IMAX auditorium, as well as the only movie palace in California with a state-of-the-art IMAX Laser projection experience. Watching a movie here is not just a night out, it's a memorable event. The IMAX laser experience at the TCL Chinese Theatre represents a quantum leap forward in cinema technology - providing audiences with the sharpest, brightest, clearest and most vivid digital images ever, combined with a whole new level of immersive audio. The experience of seeing a movie at the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX is truly unparalleled.


© Nadine Markova

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Wilshire Ebell Theatre

Excerpted from the Wilshire Ebell Theatre's website

The Ebell Club is an educational and philanthropic organization founded by women in 1894. The historic Ebell Clubhouse and Wilshire Ebell Theatre was built in 1927 and is designated an Official American Treasure. In continuous operation since 1927, the theatre has known many historic moments and welcomed more than its share of extraordinary talent.

More history to follow...


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The Wiltern


Photo courtesy of the Wiltern Theatre

Excerpted from The Wiltern's website

Originally built in 1931 in Los Angeles, the Wiltern was designed by architect Stiles O. Clements of Morgan, Walls & Clements, the city's oldest architectural firm. The Wiltern Theatre was originally designed as a vaudeville theater and initially opened as the Warner Brothers Western Theater, the flagship for the theater chain. In 1956, the building and theater were sold to the Franklin Life Insurance Company of Springfield, Illinois. The Los Angeles chapter of the American Theater Organ Enthusiasts worked to restore the theater's 37-rank Kimball pipe organ, reputed to be the largest one in Los Angeles at the time, and held recitals there through the late 1960s and into the mid-1970s. Through the intervention of a group of local preservationists, the group saved the complex from being demolished on two occasions in the late 1970s when the owners filed for demolition permits. (The preservation of the Wiltern was one of the Los Angeles Conservancy's first victories in its fight to preserve the architectural heritage of the City.)

In 1981, the Wiltern was purchased by developer Wayne Ratkovich who worked with architect Brenda Levin to restore both the theater and the office building to their former glory. To restore the theater to its original state required some expert craftsmanship to repair what was there including A.T. Heinsbergen, the son of the original painter and some creativity to replace what had been lost including salvaging vintage Art Deco seats from the soon to be renovated Paramount Theater in Portland, Oregon. Further, while it was originally designed and run as a movie theater, Ratkovich wanted to convert the Wiltern into a performing arts center that could host live concerts and Broadway-level stage performances-which entailed opening up the rear wall and extending the stage and stage house of the theater back fifteen feet. After a four-year renovation the Wiltern Theatre finally opened again to the public on May 1, 1985 with performances by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater company. The Wiltern was operated as a producing theater, and hosted its own live performances and those sponsored by Avalon Attractions, Goldenvoice, Concerts West, Universal Concerts, Timeless Entertainment, and many others, and was used for many televised events, commercial filming and feature film locations.

The Wiltern Theatre originally seated 2,344. Subsequent modifications in 2002 removed the 1,200 permanent seats on the ground floor to allow for a variety of configurations from a standing room only crowd of 2,300 to a more intimate seated arrangement holding 1850 people. The loge and mezzanine levels in the balcony continue to offer fixed theater seats. The venue remains one of the largest theaters in Los Angeles.

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