Julia Sanderson Theater

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Sanderson, Julia, Theater or Paramount, Theater
The Hippodrome, Springfield MA.jpg
The Hippodrome
Julia Sanderson Theater is located in Massachusetts
Julia Sanderson Theater
Location Springfield, Massachusetts
Coordinates 42°6′14″N 72°35′44″W / 42.10389°N 72.59556°W / 42.10389; -72.59556Coordinates: 42°6′14″N 72°35′44″W / 42.10389°N 72.59556°W / 42.10389; -72.59556
Built 1912
Architect Carlson,Ernest F.
Architectural style Classical Revival
Governing body Private
NRHP Reference #

79000348

[1]
Added to NRHP May 10, 1979

The Julia Sanderson Theater (originally and currently known as The Paramount Theater; recently and formerly known as The Hippodrome) is an historic theater at 1676-1708 Main Street in Springfield, Massachusetts, (although generally listed at 1700 Main Street.) Built in 1926 out of part of the grand Massasoit Hotel at a cost of over $1 million, the Paramount Theater was the most ornate picture palace in Western Massachusetts. As of 2011, The Paramount is in the midst of a $1.725 million renovation to once again become a theater after decade as a disco and concert hall, (the Hippodrome,) when it was the center of Springfield's club scene. [2]

History[edit]

From 1926 until the 1960s, The Paramount changed names several times - including a brief stint as the Julia Sanderson Theater, honoring a famous actress from Springfield - however, it remained a movie theater until the 1960s, when it began to find use as a mixed use venue for movies, rock concerts, and other live performances. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

In 1999, the venue was purchased and restored by Steven Stein and Michael Barrasso of Paramount Realty Investment LLC. At that time, it was turned into a lavish nightclub and performance space. The venue's main floor seats were removed; however, the 1,100 balcony seats were retained and restored. The theater underwent a $1.3 million renovation in 1999, and was reopened as the Hippodrome Theater. The original organ was restored and the marquee was changed to reflect the theater's new name.

The Hippodrome became a popular nightclub and concert venue during the 2000s. In 2011, the theater was purchased by the New England Farm Worker's Council. As of 2011, the Paramount Theater is in the midst of a $1.725 million renovation to once again become a theater and performance space.[3]

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