This Saturday (1/31/15) was Councilman Jose Huizar’s annual Night on Broadway event. For the last several years, Broadway (the street) has hosted this event as part of the Bringing Back Broadway campaign, which aims to promote the revitalization of this strip of downtown Los Angeles. Broadway has a number of old and beautiful theatres, many of which are not open to the public. Luckily, some of them are being revamped and will reopen at some point, and during Bringing Back Broadway you can visit all of the theatres that are open-able.
This year, that included the Orpheum, Globe, Tower, Million Dollar, Los Angeles, Palace and United Artists theatres. I attended last year when the event was during the day and the theatres were simply open with docents to answer questions, and you could roam in between them and just look around. This year it was a evening event, and each theatre had performances going on all night. Broadway was closed to traffic with vendors, food trucks and artists.
We made it to three theatres: The Globe, which had PG-rated cabaret and vaudeville. This theatre is still being renovated–last time I went, it was newly rescued as a former night club, and you could tell. It’s getting better, but the stage is still level to the bottom floor, so it’s an odd place to see a show. Happy to see it being re-done since it’s a unique place with multiple levels. We also went to the small Tower theatre, which was hosting Chess Boxing all night. That is exactly what you think it is: rounds of boxing inter-mixed with rounds of chess. First to check mate or knock out the opponent wins.
String Theory set up shop in the beautiful Orpheum for the night. I had likes and dislikes about their show, but seeing their giant custom-strung instrument in that perfectly renovated theatre and seeing/hearing it being played was a treat.
The Broadway events seem to get bigger every year as more theatres become open and more people get excited about the revitalization of downtown. All of the events are free and definitely worth checking out next year!