What happened to the theatre? Sometimes I wonder that when I go to my local cinema and the floors are sticky, the seats are dirty, and there is no ambiance whatsoever. What happened to those movie palaces of old? The ones with with the glitz and the grandeur; the ones that made going to the movies an event.
Well, thanks to groups like the Los Angeles Historic Theater Foundation, those palaces of old are rising out of the ashes and once again becoming premier destinations.
I am proud to say that I’m a member of this fine organization. According to their mission statement they are “dedicated to protecting, preserving, restoring and sustaining the operation of Southern California’s historic theatres.” Pretty impressive, huh?
Now, right about now I bet you’re wondering where the bargain comes in. No fear, I haven’t forgotten the goal of this blog. Well, the foundation continuously offers tours of various theatres throughout SoCal. Whether the theatre is completely restored or looks like it’s heading for the rubble pile (only to be saved at the last minute of course) you can bet the LAHTF will be offering a tour at some point. I’ve been to quite a few of the them and have seen theatres at both ends of the spectrum. I was able to visit the Leimert-Vision Theatre prior to it’s proposed restoration as well as the El Capitan in all it’s restored glory.
And the best part, anyone is welcome on the tour. You don’t have to be a member, although your price will be discounted if you are. The highest price I’ve ever seen for a tour is $12. That is the HIGHEST price. For access to an entire theatre, front of the house and back, that is quite the bargain.
So, definitely sign up for one of their tours or better yet, become a member. Membership is a measly $25 per year and offers you significant discounts on all their events. And if my prose won’t convince you, perhaps these photos will.
Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation – www.lahtf.org