Granada Theater

6427 N. Sheridan Road,
Chicago, IL 60626

Unfavorite 34 people favorited this theater

Showing 101 - 125 of 152 comments

Broan
Broan on June 18, 2006 at 7:41 am

Here is a profile from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency’s HAARGIS system. It includes small pictures.

MKuecker
MKuecker on May 27, 2006 at 12:09 am

Hi Paul,
Yes www.oldgranadatheatre.com is my webpage :) It seems there were a lot of political fingers, in a lot of political pies back in that day. So who got who paid off is hard to say. The Granada had her fate sealed. Those who were very active on the “Save The Granada” committee disappeared faster than yesterdays trash. – Mayor Harold Washington was going to sign paperwork to have it labled “Landmark,” The papers were still on his desk when he suffered his fatal heart attack. His successor’s first order of business was to put that document through the paper shredder. It was bigger than Greylord Scandal if you ask me.
BUT….. THAT’S CHICAGO! :(
That vintage photo was actually taken in 1978 – shortly before the restoration which would open it up to ROCKY HORROR, and CONCERTS, and DR. WHO CONVENTIONS. :)

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on May 26, 2006 at 7:12 am

Charles DuPont,

Are you the one that has the website www.oldgranadatheatre.com ? That’s where I received the information in my above post.

When I was 17-18 years old, I worked for Andy Frain Ushering and Security. My co-workers and I were always happy when we had a contract for a show at the Granada. We actually preferred working the Granada instead of the Uptown. No offense to those who are fans of that theatre, but we always regarded the Uptown as a cr@phole! In contrast, we regarded the Granada as “Faded Glory” but it was much cleaner. And in retrospect, had M&M been able to retain its liquor license, the Granada might still be with us today. Wy couldn’t Loyola have integrated it into its campus? Many colleges and universities have successfully done this!

Per the above comments comparing the Granada and the Paradise, the Granada’s modernized marquee was certainly the nicer of the two.

Finally, the vintage photo above appears to be taken right about the time of demolition or at least closure. The place looks vacant and the marquee is blank.

MKuecker
MKuecker on May 26, 2006 at 12:25 am

Thanks Paul :)
You’re a true Chicagoan that knows we got the best ward alderen money can buy. M&M was well in the black when I saw their books, and pending SBA Loan Application. The liquor license was all it needed. :(

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on May 25, 2006 at 6:02 am

In the late 1970s or early 1980s, a company called “M and M Amusements” took over this place. M and M attempted to clean the theatre up and began booking top-name entertainment at the time. Such bookings included a stage version of Rocky Horror and concerts such as Cheap Trick and Off Broadway USA (“…Stay in time boy/Don’t get out of line boy). M and M ran into trouble with the community because of the lack of parking. The community supposedly claimed that concert-goers were vandalizing the area, damaging automobiles, etc. As a result, M and M lost its liqour license and was unable to book concerts after that. It was a shame too, because it seemed that M and M really tried to make the Granada Theatre work.

Then again, there were all sorts of politics behind the liqour license suspension….

Amosduncan
Amosduncan on May 5, 2006 at 2:57 pm

This was a beautiful place. I saw a lot of things there, I think it was part of the Plitt chain, circa 73 to 76.
Jack Nicholson came for the world premire of “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest” a guy had his autograph
at the little Greek place next door.
I sat in this huge, almost empty palace on some summer afternoons for “Harry and Tonto” “Chinatown” “The
Conversation” and more. Part of a era in movie going that passed too soon.

jukingeo
jukingeo on April 6, 2006 at 12:26 pm

Hello All,

Been doing some research on the Granada lately and low and behold I have to make a correction to what I said above in terms of the Granada’s marquee. As it turns out the artist DID get inspriation from the Granada’s marquee as well, but at the point I wrote the post above I didn’t know the Granada’s marquee was changed and originally looked like this:

photo.%20%3cbr%3eHABS%20ILL,16-CHIG,109-30&displayProfile=0)

SAWEET! There it is. I love this marquee.

But y'all wanna see double. Getta loada this:

(Click on the picture to make it big)

View link

Yup! Twin sisters.

I got the THSA 1999 Annual on these theatres. A MUST for anyone intersted in them. The book also explains the slight difference between the Granada and the Marbro as well. There are two other theatres covered in there as well…The Regal and Diversy I believe. But the pictures and documentation is incredible. Many many thanks to Jim Rankin for pointing these out to me. As he puts it, “You will not find better pictures anywhere”.

After my readings, I must say that it does upset me that both these theatres were destroyed. But what angers me the most is that the Granada hung on to the 90’s and it seems like very little was done to save it. I know, I know it is easier said than done to save an old theatre and it does appear us theatre lovers are in the minority. But the big picture (pun intended) is once these gems are destroyed…they are gone and will never be replaced.

There are few instances of hope. I was very happy to learn that the Bronx Loews Paradise was recently saved and restored. This theatre is not too far from me…and I only learned about it recently as well. I will be checking this one out for sure!

G'day all and enjoy the pix.

JG

beardbear31
beardbear31 on March 30, 2006 at 6:10 pm

Geo,
Sorry, it appears that the website recently lost it’s webspace… However I saved the picture with “State Street Sadie” on the marquee. E-mail me at , and I will send you the picture.

jukingeo
jukingeo on March 30, 2006 at 5:05 pm

Hello All

BEARDBEAR31—I am interested in seeing this picture of the Paradise with State Street Sadie on the Marquee, however your links do not work. Yes, you are correct, that is also the name of a song on the album.

However, I do have to disagree with you in terms of the album art. Here is why.

Here is a picture of the REAL paradise theatre:

http://www.playle.com/KDL/41315.jpg

Here is a picture of the Styx Paradise Theatre Album:

View link

Finally here is a picture of the Granada Theatre:

View link

NOW everyone compare the facades (NOT the marquees). Yes, the album art is closer to the Granada than the Paradise. The Paradise didn’t have the three window layout. Has anyone ever seen the full art layout for the Paradise Theatre album? I have. It shows the crest on top of the theatre and it clearly is just about identical to that of the Granada Theatre.

JG

sdoerr
sdoerr on January 3, 2006 at 11:57 am

Wow, this appears to be a beauitful theater.

Reminds me somewhat of the Michigan Theater here in Detroit.

The lobby is comparable to that of Rapp & Rapp.

Such a shame this beautiful treasure had to be demolished.

kmulkey
kmulkey on August 23, 2005 at 3:31 pm

I saw Harry Chapin at the Granada in 1979. What a great place. I believe it was one of his last concerts before his death. He came out in the lobby afterwards and shook hands, signed autographs, etc. Very cool.

MKuecker
MKuecker on May 14, 2005 at 3:53 am

For those of you who posted reference to my webpage, I thank you very kindly for the promotional advertising. :)

Visit me again: http://www.oldgranadatheatre.com/

You will find a wealth of info.

warhorse
warhorse on April 12, 2005 at 5:54 pm

And yet beautiful. Partly because they help us remember what the Granada once looked like.

scorseseisgod
scorseseisgod on March 31, 2005 at 3:21 pm

Here is a photograph of the theater in mid-demolition.

View link

I spent a lot of quality time watching movies in this grand old barn. Remmeber the water fountain? There was a switch on the wall that looked like a doorbell that you pushed to get the water. That 24-sheet for “Cleopatra” was plastered to the side of the building for well over a year.

beardbear31
beardbear31 on March 26, 2005 at 1:15 am

The drawing of the Paradise Theater for the Styx album cover was NOT taken from a picture of the Granada….. it was taken from a picture of the actual Paradise Theater..the picture even had the name of the movie, “State Street Sadie” on the marquee, which was a song on the album…also the taxi on the album cover is there…. this picture can be found at: http://www.moviepalaces.net/paradise-ext1.htm….and the woman with the outstreached arms, on top of the marquee on the album cover, is actually part of the interior decor, which can also be found further on this website..

JimRankin
JimRankin on March 11, 2005 at 3:31 am

The previous two posts echo what so many of us ‘theatres buffs’ have experienced: the last visit shortly before demolition of a once beautiful theatre. These are favorite accounts at the ‘Slide Bashes’ (shows after the banquet) at the annual conventions of the Theatre Historical Society in a different city every summer. They are called “CONCLAVES” and are detailed on thier web site: www.HistoricTheatres.org where you click on Conclaves. I am not a photographer like many of the guys who show their slides at the conventions, but I have many bittersweet memories of being among the last to tour a theatre before it became rubble, but yet regret the far greater number I had never seen before each one’s fateful day. I once thought of combining my stories of such melancholy tours, but I am afraid that it would be too melancholy to read! :(

jayBeye
jayBeye on March 10, 2005 at 5:49 pm

While living in Chicago in 1973 I happened one day to catch a janitor at the theater and asked if I could come in and take some photos. He kindly let me in and for three hours or so I wandered all over the building in awe. What a magnificant building. It makes me sad to hear that it has been razed. I see the same thing here in California. No regard for the intricate beauties and harmonies of classic architecture. I did see a number of films there but never abnle to sneak up to the balcony.
jayBeye

warhorse
warhorse on February 7, 2005 at 11:10 pm

You know, I really enjoyed that story about the guy’s exploration into the decaying bowels of the theater. Just fascinating.

http://www.oldgranadatheatre.com/journey.html

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on February 7, 2005 at 7:44 pm

Copies of old lists of the AIA’s membership would be handy to have in circumstances like this. Some large public library somewhere must have them. Copies of regional versions of “Who’s Who” would be useful, too. I don’t think any of them are online yet, but public libraries usually have them for their area. It should be easy enough for somebody in Chicago to double check this.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on February 7, 2005 at 7:07 pm

According to the index at the Chicago Art Institute, the name of the architect is Eichenbaum, not Eichenberg.

Fricanoj
Fricanoj on January 8, 2005 at 9:00 am

I was an usher at the Granada in 1968. the first movie I remember seeing there was “The Graduate”. I was there for about a year and rose to the rank of Head Usher. I remember the huge lobby and how it used to fill up before a show. We used to hold inspections an Saturday nights to makee sure all the ushers were looking there best. I’ve explored the theater from top to bottom. from the roof, to the “catacombs” as we used to call them under the seats in the auditorium, to the huge spiral staircase on the top level of the backstage area. The managers I worked under were Mr. Grossman who eventually went to the United Artists Theater Downtown and then Mr. Dave Klingman who wound up going to the Nortown. We did a lot of crazy things there including spending an overnight there, (we wern’t supposed to but we did anyway). I was also there as they were tearing it down and I also have a brick from the building. I think about those days constantly and remember them as some of the best times I had.
Joe Fricano

OliverQLauder
OliverQLauder on December 30, 2004 at 10:51 pm

I was a student at Loyola from 1984 to 1989.

I also “let myself in” several times in the late 1980’s as the demolition was under way. One day, someone had smashed all of the Granada’s glass doors and I just walked in one day. I have often described the interior as appearing as it had been bombed during WWII.

I will never forget walking around the rubble with little light but being amazed. The highlight of my tour was walking into a pitch black room and hitting my flash. For a fraction of a second, the entire theatre opened up. I was actually in the auditorium. I snapped away. Today, I have two pieces of ornamental plaster from the Granada hanging in my kitchen. Will never forget this place. Today, it is a shame that unless you knew it was there, there is not a trace of it today on Sheridan road.

Oliver Q. Lauder
Aurora, IL

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 9, 2004 at 6:55 am

The architect at Levy and Klein who designed the Granada was Edward E. Eichenbaum.

The original architectural drawings of the Granada are in the possession of the Art Institute of Chicago, and can be viewed there by qualified scholars. (I believe they can be seen only by appointment.)

JeffWeinstein
JeffWeinstein on October 15, 2004 at 9:19 pm

I saw “Logan’s Run” and Streisand’s “A Star is Born” in this theater in the 70’s. Years later, I attended a Cheap Trick concert here. I think the reason it ultimately closed was due to a lack of PARKING. There was NO parking lot nearby, and the residential area was (and is) VERY congested.

However, the theater also was just TOO BIG to survive. It is a shame that this is the case, but in the day and age of the 6, 12 and 20+ screen theaters, it just could not compete.

warhorse
warhorse on August 30, 2004 at 9:47 pm

Thanks, that is a relief that no bomb ever went off at OUR Granada. Even if it would have been long before most of us were around.