Keith's Theater

117 N. Pennsylvania Street,
Indianapolis, IN 46204

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Originally opened on 13th September 1875 as the Grand Opera House (architect Wallace Hume of Chicago). The seating capacity was given as 1,608.

The theatre was re-built in 1907 utilising three of the original walls of the old theatre and it re-opened on 5th September 1910 as B.F. Keith’s Theater.

The 1941 edition of Film Daily Yearbook lists the Keith’s Theater as ‘Closed’, but it is operating again in the 1943 edition. The address is given as 118 N. Pennsylvania Street, Indianapolis in these two editions, but in the 1950 edition of F.D.Y. the street number is 117.

The interior was rebuilt again in 1957 and Keith’s Theater finally closed on 30th July 1964.

Contributed by Lost Memory, Ken Roe

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 27, 2007 at 6:46 pm

This is a 1960s photo of Keith’s Theater.

kencmcintyre on June 27, 2007 at 7:05 pm

Advertised as early as 1912 in the Indianapolis Star, assuming B.F. Keith’s is the same theater. A 1970 story states the Keith had been renovated and was being used for offices at that time. I don’t see a later reference to the actual demolition of the theater, but if I do I will pass it along.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on September 6, 2007 at 7:45 pm

A Wurlitzer theater organ opus 1707 style H NP was installed in Keith’s Theater on 8/23/1927. Status: Sold.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on July 16, 2010 at 12:07 pm

The Grand Opera House is listed in the 1897-98 edition of the Julius Cahn Official Theatrical Guide. It had 1,900 seats: orchestra-650; Balcony- 450; Gallery-800. The auditorium was on the ground floor and had both gas and electric illumination. The proscenium opening was 34 feet wide X 29 feet high, and the stage was 39 feet deep. The Managers were Dickson & Talbot. Other theaters in Indianapolis at that time were the English Opera House, the Empire and the Park. The 1897 population was 125,000.

Tinseltoes on July 15, 2012 at 9:24 am

Modernization described in this multi-page 1958 trade article: boxoffice

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