Orpheum Theatre

112 S. State Street,
Chicago, IL 60603

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Showing 19 comments

Trolleyguy on May 8, 2016 at 7:01 am

Status should now be demolished.

DavidZornig on May 7, 2016 at 8:05 pm

Here is the recent article about some of the old Orpheum interior just uncovered.


Broan on January 17, 2016 at 1:02 pm

Here is a great THSA photo.

Irisheyes490 on April 24, 2015 at 11:22 am

My grandma used to work there!

very080 on July 18, 2014 at 10:48 am

Great image of the theater in 1907 http://umedia.lib.umn.edu/node/66692?mode=expert

Broan on September 27, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Visible to the edge of this image: http://chicagopast.com/post/32402435741

Broan on December 4, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Disregard what I said earlier. If anything, the Orpheum was in the building that now houses the Men’s Wearhouse. The Orpheum closed in the spring of 1937 and was replaced by Kitty Kelly Shoes. So it is standing, just not in the building we thought. While Bryan’s article from Sept 8, 2009 says that it’s a new building, a previous article made clear that Kitty Kelly would heavily remodel the existing building.

Ramova7719 on July 26, 2011 at 8:11 am

Talking about the subject Broan was talking about that hes 95 % sure it is if you go on bing it shows you an old water tank and it might say Orpheum. They dpon’t make water tanks like that. Plus the roof is curved like a theatre, and just like he said its the same top. I to am 99.99 percent sure its the same building!

kencmcintyre on November 22, 2008 at 6:25 pm

Now you made me feel bad, after my pitiful Google search, when you researched the building back to 1872. You should have warned me.

Broan on November 22, 2008 at 6:11 pm

Correct. I’m about 95% sure it’s the same building. I chewed through the topic thoroughly at View link

kencmcintyre on November 22, 2008 at 6:07 pm

BW, I wouldn’t hazard a guess as to the status of this building, but I did take a look at the photo on Google maps. 114 S. State is the Rainbow store, which is a separate building. 112 S. is the narrow white building with no windows. It looks like whatever was on the first floor has been boarded up.

You can take a look at it yourself, but you have to click a few times on the arrow to get over to 112.

Broan on October 29, 2008 at 6:17 pm

Opened September 9, 1907. Closed Late 1936/Early 1937

The building may actually be still standing although heavily remodeled several times over

GrandMogul on April 10, 2007 at 11:00 am

Chicago Tribune, Sunday, June 1, 1958, s. 3, p. 6, c. 5:
by John Fink
Phil Silvers memories of Chicago go back to the heyday of vaudeville. “Chicago was great in vaudeville days,” he says. “It was the center of the Orpheum circuit. One time you could stay six months in Chicago and not repeat a single theater. You played the Palace going west, and when you came back played the State-Lake and Orpheum.”

SouthsideBoy on December 26, 2006 at 11:05 am

I am filming a documentary on our old summer home in Eagle River, Wisconsin, which was built in 1926 by Peter Schaefer, who was one of owners of this theatre. My family purchased this vacation estate in 1940 from the Schaefers' after Ms. Schaefer’s death. If anyone out there has any related information on PJ Schaefer, please share it with me and I will credit you in our film. My Uncle, James Coston, was a friend of Schaefer in the 30’s when he was with Warner Brothers. I can be contacted thru this web site or directly at Principle photography for this feature begins Jan 11th in Eagle River. Thanks for any help you can lend, this was such a long time ago, not many people still around.

Broan on November 1, 2006 at 11:52 am

Here is a postcard view of the Orpheum.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on August 13, 2006 at 10:12 am

In the new book by Konrad Schiecke “Historic Movie Theatres in Illinois 1883-1960 it states the Orpheum Theatre closed in 1937, operated by Warner Bros.

However it is still listed in the 1941 & 1943 editions of Film Daily Yearbook under Chicago, but it’s not listed in the Circuit’s section under Warner Bros.

barrygoodkin on August 13, 2006 at 9:54 am

Warner Bros. began to acquire their theatre chain in 1925. The Warner is not advertised in the January 6, 1940 Chicago Daily Tribune and is not listed in the theatres section of International Motion Picture Almanac for 1942/1943 or subsequent Almanacs or Film Daily Year Books.
Does anyone know the date WB closed the Orpheum and when the building was converted to other uses?

Broan on March 22, 2005 at 3:34 pm

I’m sorry for the confusion. The chicago historical society’s 1911 street renumeration guide (http://www.chsmedia.org/househistory/1911snc/start.pdf) shows that 176-78 was the old address and 110 was indeed the new address. The bijou dream was 178 and became 114.

Broan on August 25, 2004 at 10:59 pm

View link shows the address as 174-176 S. State (As well as a nice rendering of the facade), and the Bijou Dream as 178 S. State, which would indeed be adjoining properties. The 112 S. State address presumably came from View link I would attribute this error to the positions of the 7-8 and 1-2 keys on the numerical keypad. So, this entry should read 176 S. State and the Bijou Dream should read 178 S. State, and the erroneus location near Couch Street should be removed from the Bijou’s entry.