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Theatre at Ace Hotel, Los Angeles

Theatre at Ace Hotel, Los Angeles

Former Names: United Artists Theatre

Website: http://www.acehotel.com/losangeles/theatre Open website in new window

Telephone: (213) 235-9614 Call (213) 235-9614

Address: 933 South Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90015 Show address in Google Maps (new window)

 Featured Photos

 Overview

The Theatre at Ace Hotel, formerly known as the United Artists Theatre, opened in 1927 as the flagship for United Artists’ west coast operations. Starting in 2012 the surrounding office building was converted into the Ace Hotel and the theatre was renovated and re-opened in 2014 as a live entertainment and special events venue.

United Artists was formed by D. W. Griffith, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin, who broke away from the dominant studio system in order to retain complete control over their work. This history of United Artists is represented in the theatre’s interior decoration where murals by Anthony Heinsbergen depict stars of the era, including Pickford and Fairbanks, caricatures of studio bosses as demons, and members of the United Artists’ Board of Directors as angels and gods.

The containing building, a 12-story office tower, was designed by architectural firm Walker and Eisen as a long-term lease to Texaco for their western regional offices. The 1,600-seater theatre’s design was by C. Howard Crane, the Spanish Gothic concept coming from the castles and cathedrals seen by Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks on their honeymoon in Spain. The heavily ornamented gothic organ grilles give way to fan-shaped ceiling brackets, with a large sunburst dominating the central ceiling of the auditorium. The sunburst dome, internally tiled with approximately 3,000 mirrors and 2,000 hanging glass pendants, is lit from behind the surrounding coving by hidden multi-colored lights which allow the dome to take on a variety of colors. The theatre originally contained a small mezzanine hanging below the rear of the balcony seating approximately 200, however this was removed in the 1950s to accommodate a new projection booth at the rear of the Orchestra seating.

C. Howard Crane designed other theatres for United Artists and his 1928 Detroit theatre was very similar to this theatre, including reuse of the elaborate plaster molds to realize a greater return from their expensive creation.

The entrance lobby and front-of-house areas arch 40ft in height. The lobby features huge windows on the Broadway façade allowing natural light to flood in, which bounces off the large mirrors on either side wall, combining to give the impression of a much larger and brighter space. The lobby ceiling is painted to emulate stained glass. The gothic theme continues in the main/inner lobby, with elaborate gothic plaster adorning the walls in addition to paintings evoking gothic tapestries. Multiple levels, allowing for audience circulation to the Balcony and old Mezzanine, encircle three sides of the main lobby affording views of the lobby from above.

The theatre ceased showing movies in 1989 and the Los Angeles University Cathedral took over the entire building for church use. The church moved out to Glendale in 2010 and the Ace Hotel group purchased the building in 2012, converting the office building into a hotel and reopening the theatre in 2014. It is now open many days of the week playing host to a mixture of live events, movie screenings and entertainment shows.

 How do I visit the Theatre at Ace Hotel?

The Theatre at Ace Hotel does not offer its own tours however below are some options for seeing a bit more of the theatre than by simply attending one of the many and varied events it hosts:

Check out the Theatre At Ace Hotel’s events calendar Link opens in new window for upcoming events, some of which are free, at the theatre.

 Further Reading

Online

Venue Information
Flying System
Linesets 23 (originally 50)
System Type Wire-guide counterweight operated Stage Left
General Information
Seating Capacity 1,647 total: 825 Orchestra, 822 Balcony (originally 2,214)
Movie Projection
Projector Barco 4K located in Orchestra-level Projection Booth
Stage Dimensions
Orchestra Pit Depth 10ft 8in at center; 2ft 6in at sides
Orchestra Pit Width 43ft
Proscenium Height 32ft
Proscenium Width 48ft
Rear of Plaster Line to Back Wall Approx 28ft
Wing Space SL Approx 16ft
Wing Space SR None (Green Room and Lift Room occupy SR)

Archived files for this venue

 Photos of the Theatre at Ace Hotel

Auditorium

Exterior

Public Areas

All images copyright © 2002-2018 Mike Hume/historictheatrephotos.com. For licensing and/or re-use contact me here.



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