Chicago Theatre: The History Of And A Short Guide To Experiencing It

1239 words - 5 pages

I was first intrigued to write a paper about the Chicago theatre when I was told it was one of the biggest theatre cities in the world. I used to live in the suburbs of Chicago but never really got downtown very often. I honestly had no clue just how big and diverse the theatre scene is in Chicago. You can literally see a different event every week for the rest of your life. Not many cities can make that claim and back it up.I would like to first start with the famous Chicago Theatre. It was first opened in 1921 and was often referred to as "The wonder Theatre of the World". The Chicago Theatre was the first lavish movie complex in America and quickly became the prototype for all others to ...view middle of the document...

Tickets are not cheap for these theatres by any means. I just searched for Disney's The Lion King and the cheapest tickets were $82.50 each. That would make a very expensive night for a family. I was somewhat disappointed that these prices drive the common family out. I feel that it goes beyond what the original theatre was designed for.I was originally going to talk about the impact of the Chicago fire on theatre until I ran across the Iroquois Theatre. It was only 5 weeks old when it erupted into a blaze with a max capacity crowd of 1,900 people. The Iroquois Theatre had been unbelievably lazy with their standards and codes for fire safety. The entire building was burned in 15 minutes. It was like a giant 50 foot fireball swept through the place and most the theatre doors were locked. All theatres, halls, and churches were then closed down in Chicago until they could be inspected. It put some 6,000 people into unemployment. Where the Iroquois Theatre once stood has now made way for the Ford Motor Company Oriental Theatre.On a lighter note, I would now like to move onto modern Chicago Theatre. Just doing a quick search on the internet, I found 133 separate theatres in Chicago alone. Ranging from Second City to the dinner Noble Horse Theatre to the bizarre Neo-Futurarium. There is literally anything you could want to see at just about any given time.To find a play that suits your interest can be a very daunting task. I was told about the ChicagoReader and I do remember reading that when I lived in Naperville. It has a huge amount of information but it's not organized very well and prices are not clearly stated. I did find a goldmine called chicagoplays.com. It is based on the League of Chicago Theatres and includes 125 Chicago area theatres. You can get ½ price tickets to all league theatres and full price to all Ticketmaster events.They produce the Chicagoplays theater guide that is the most comprehensive listing of performances that I could find. It has show information, schedules, box office and group ticket numbers, and theater locations. It also comes with two maps with theater locations pointed out on them. One of maps is for downtown and another one of the suburbs. This site really had some...

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