Today is the 90th anniversary of the 5:30 pm opening of the legendary Chicago Theatre. Having conquered the West, South and North sides with palatial palaces, Balaban and Katz arrived in the Chicago Loop in a big way and they were on their way to much bigger things with Paramount Pictures and Paramount – Publix theatres. The Chicago was designed by Rapp & Rapp with furnishings by Marshall Field & Co. and bronze and crystal fixtures by Victor S. Pearlman Co.
Opening day featured Norma Talmadge in “The Sign on the Door”, Buster Keaton in “The Playhouse”, a symphony orchestra filling the expansive pit, and Jesse Crawford “Poet of the Organ” at the still extant Wurlitzer. Happy 90th birthday Chicago Theatre ! (RS)