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Development News

Elitch Gardens Theatre getting facelift

The historic Elitch Gardens Theatre.

White Construction Group and Humphries Poli Architects are restoring the Elitch Gardens Theatre, a 122-year-old structure that fell into disrepair after closing its doors in 1991.

The historic theater hosted performers such as Grace Kelly, Douglas Fairbanks, Edward G. Robinson, Mickey Rooney and Robert Redford. It screened Colorado’s first moving picture in 1905. Antoinette "Tony" Perry made her debut on the Elitch stage at age 11 before going onto Broadway fame and eventually becoming the namesake of the Tony Awards.

After a 2007 renovation that focused on the exterior of the building, the Elitch Theatre Foundation raised $540,000 for the first phase of the interior rehabilitation, including a Community Development Block Grant of $425,0000 from the Denver Office of Economic Development. 

"The Elitch Garden Theatre is a beacon for north Denver, an icon that has transcended many in the area." says Courtney Tucker, Project Manager with White Construction. "We are pleased to have worked with the foundation as they always worked to give this building back the status it deserves, a place of culture, education and continued history."

The initial phase of interior restoration will bring the theater up to code and implement bare-bones, life-safety compliance measures. Later phases of the renovation will address the balcony and cosmetic features.

The Elitch Gardens Historic Theatre Foundation is continuing its fundraising efforts for future renovations with a variety of programs, including a film series that ran this summer. The goal is to return the theater to use as a working theater, as well as a community center and host of art education programs.

Contact Confluence Denver Development News Editor Margaret Jackson with tips and leads for future stories at margaret@confluence-denver.com.

Read more articles by Margaret Jackson.

Margaret is a veteran Denver real estate reporter and can be contacted here.
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