description

A huge crowd accompanied the opening of the Plaza Theater on September 12, 1930. Designed as a modern film house with the flexibility of presenting stage shows, the Plaza eventually hosted popular traveling shows and movies. Its size (capacity of 2,410), elaborate decor, and technical innovations made it stand out: While the exterior facade was designed to be reminiscent of a Spanish mission-style parapet, patrons were awed by the interior, with its intricately painted ceilings, mosaic-tiled floors, decorative metal railings and sconces and antique furnishings (Spanish Colonial Revival style). Additionally, the Plaza offered electrically cooled drinking fountains, a nursery, a $850 marble and brass telecheck system that alert ushers when a seat became vacant, and a Brenograph machine that could throw over a thousand color effects onto the black-and-white scenes.

However, in the 1950s, the Theater's patronage declined and by the 1970s it was sold. In the 1980s, the El Paso Community Foundation saved the Plaza from demolition and donated it to the City of El Paso in 1990. After, it was restored to its original splendor and today hosts concerts, shows, musicals and plays once again.

Uploaded on 04.20.2015 by UTEP Library Special Collections

Central / Downtown, (1930 - 1939), Cultural Heritage

  • Plaza Theater
  • opening
  • Shows
  • theater
  • El Paso Community Foundation
  • restauration
  • Spanish Colonial Revival style
  • Architecture
  • southwest

Your comment will be visible after the El Paso Museum staff has reviewed it. This usually happens within 24 hours.

Thank you for your comment

Opening of Plaza Theater - 1930

Report this entry

Choose the most important reason for this report

Your name

Your email address

Optional detail

Thank you for your report

More from the same community-collection

Selena Car

Selena themed car at the closing of the Low and Slow exhibit

PANCHO VILLA STASH HOUSE

"On the southwestern edge of downtown El Paso, it's a celebration for a restoration and a person from the past...

PANCHO VILLA STASH HOUSE

"On the southwestern edge of downtown El Paso, it's a celebration for a restoration and a person from the past...

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community

Historias: Pride Edition - Virtual Exhibition

Historias: Stories of El Paso - Pride Edition
A virtual exhibition curated by our community