Plaza Theatre

128 South Palm Canyon Drive,
Palm Springs, CA 92262

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Plaza Theatre

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The Plaza Theatre opened in December 1936 with Greta Garbo in “Camille”.

Through the years it has played host to Bob Hope’s and Jack Benny’s radio show. Other performers, including Frank Sinatra, have given live performances here.

Since 1991, it has been home to “The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies”, a vaudeville-style showcase of music and dance from the 1930’s to 1960’s, featuring famous guest stars. Regular talent, including locals, are billed as "Our lengendary line of long-legged lovelies…all 54-84 years young!" It was closed in May 2014.

Contributed by Ron Pierce

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

BabyJaneHudson on November 14, 2004 at 4:09 pm

The World Premiere of Greta Garbo’s “Camille” was held here in 1936. Garbo herself attended as well as most of the Palm Springs Hollywood crowd.
Supposedly, buried somewhere within the walls of the theatre is a time capsule containing the actual print of “Camille” that was shown there at the premiere.

trooperboots on January 1, 2005 at 8:37 pm

This is an incredible 3 hour vaudeville style show. I understand it is one of the very few vaudeville shows still being performed in the United States and successfully so. The show includes the showgirls, but also song and dance numbers, a puppeteer, a juggler and infamous announcer and stage comedian “Riff Markowitz”, who created the show. The performers are all over 50, but the show is highly energetic, glamourus, lavish and completely professional. They screen movie clips and trailers from the 1930s for the half hour before the show begins to put the audience in the proper retro mood for the show.

trooperboots on January 25, 2005 at 1:11 am

I found out Jack Benny used to do radio broadcasts from the stage of the Plaza.

Patsy on January 8, 2007 at 8:16 pm

I have friends who are in Palm Springs now and hopefully they’ll go see a show there. Also would like to see a photo of this theatre that featured Bob Hope, Jack Benny and Frank Sinatra.

kencmcintyre on September 15, 2007 at 7:25 pm

The Plaza was part of the Earle C. Strebe chain in the early seventies, along with the Palm Springs Theater and the Ramon Drive-In in Palm Springs. Strebe also ran theaters in Big Bear Lake, Crestline and Lake Arrowhead at that time.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 10, 2014 at 8:01 pm

In late 1977, Metropolitan Theatres twinned the Village and Plaza Theatres in Palm Springs. The January 2, 1978, issue of Boxoffie ran a brief article with a drawing of one of the the Plaza’s twin auditoriums, prepared by the Filbert Company, the theater supply outfit that handled the alterations.

The partition dividing the old auditorium featured decorations matching those on the original side walls so that the theater’s Spanish atmospheric style could be retained. Unlike many twinnings, the Plaza’s also included reconfigured seating to maintain good sight lines. The Plaza and Village Theatres both reopened shortly before Christmas, 1977.

LuisV on March 15, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Going to see the Follies Show tonight! The show is closing in May. I will try to find out what is in store for this landmark theatre and report back.

LuisV on September 8, 2014 at 11:12 am

The status of this theater should be changed to CLOSED. The Palm Springs Follies, its longtime tenant, ended its run in May. As I understand it the theater is owned by the city and they plan to renovate it. Palm Springs is undergoing a renaissance and this theater could play a prominent role. I’ll report back as soon as I hear anything new. p.s. The theater is lovely! I enjoyed it very much.

LuisV on December 23, 2015 at 9:25 pm

It’s been 15 months since my last post and alas this theater is still CLOSED (though it shows as open on CT as of 12/23). The good thing is that the city owns the theater and it recognizes that this theater is a historic treasure. The bad thing is that it needs money for upgrades and the city doesn’t have it or won’t spend it. So far as I know it is not in danger of demolition.

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