The 65' marquee of the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall at SW Broadway and Main in downtown Portland, Oregon.
Now part of the Portland Center for the Performing Arts, this auditorium first opened under the name The Portland Publix Theater in 1928 as a vaudville stage. Two years later it was renamed The Paramount Theater and became a 3000-seat movie theater with multiple balconies, orchestra pit, an ornate marble-and-mirror walled grand lobby complete with 8' crystal chandeliers, and both mens and ladies lounges staffed with with attendants, hairdressers, and maids.
By the early '70's, the building was falling into disrepair and in 1982 the Portland City Counsil had the structure condemned, even though it had been added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.
In 1983, the city decided to move forward with a 10 million dollar restoration to bring the theater back to it's original glory and include it as part of the areas new performing arts center. Thanks to a major donation from Portland residents Arlene and Harold Schnitzer, the theater was renamed The Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. The giant marquee was also rebuilt with the words "Portland" replacing the original "Paramount" branding.
Copyright © 2012 by Craig Paup. All rights reserved.
Any use, printed or digital, in whole or edited, requires my written permission.