Detroit Opera House
Detroit Opera House faces Grand Circus Park.
|Location||1526 Broadway Street
|Opened||22 January 1922|
|Former name(s)||Grand Circus Theater (1960s–1985)
Broadway Capitol Theater (1934–1960s)
Paramount Theater (1929–1934)
Capitol Theater (1922–1929)
Detroit Opera House
|Part of||Grand Circus Park Historic District (#83000894)|
|Designated CP||February 28, 1983|
The Detroit Opera House is an ornate opera house in the United States, located in Grand Circus Park Historic District of Detroit, Michigan. It is the home of the Michigan Opera Theatre and its productions. The 2,700 seat venue also hosts a variety of other events. The historic theatre opened January 22, 1922.
The theatre is located at 1526 Broadway Street and was originally designed by C. Howard Crane, having created other prominent Detroit theaters such as The Fillmore Detroit, Fox Theater and the Detroit Symphony's Orchestra Hall. Architect Eric J. Hill participated in an extensive restoration of the building which reopened in 1996.
Over the years, opera has been presented at a variety of venues in Detroit - the Old Detroit Opera House (1869–1963) at Campus Martius, the Whitney Grand Opera House (Garrick Theatre) at Griswold and Michigan avenues, and the New Detroit Opera House (1886–1928) at Randolph and Monroe streets.
The present Detroit Opera House opened in 1922 and was originally known as the Capitol Theatre. It was among the first of several performance venues built around Detroit's Grand Circus Park. When it opened, the Capitol was reportedly the fifth largest movie theater in the world, seating about 3,500 people. In 1929, the Capitol Theater's name was changed to the Paramount Theater, and in 1934 was changed again, to the Broadway Capitol Theater.
During the first few decades of its history the theater presented feature films along with live entertainment including artists such as jazz legends Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. Later the Broadway Capitol was converted to a movies-only policy. Following a minor restoration in the 1960s, the building became the 3,367-seat Grand Circus Theatre. (see ref note) By 1978 it had declined to exhibiting soft core porn films and closed. It reopened again in 1981, only to close once more in 1985.
In 1988, the Michigan Opera Theatre purchased the building and dubbed it the Detroit Opera House, after an extensive restoration and stage expansion. The reopening in 1996 was celebrated with a gala event featuring Luciano Pavarotti and other noted artists. The Detroit Opera House is now configured with seating for an audience of 2,700. Since 1996, the opera house has annually hosted five opera productions, five dance productions from touring companies, and a variety of other musical and comedy events.
Note: The name Grand Circus Theatre may cause confusion, since another Grand Circus Theatre (1913–1924), originally known as the Central Theatre, once stood at 2115 Woodward Avenue. What is now The Fillmore Detroit Theatre (1925) arose on the same site at 2115 Woodward.
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- Detroit Opera House official site
- Detroit Opera House at Cinema Treasures
- Nederlander Detroit
- Wicked is performing at the Detroit Opera House in Detroit, MI