Lyric Theatre

12952 Western Avenue,
Blue Island, IL 60406

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LYRIC and GRAND Theatres; Blue Island, Illinois.

The Lyric Theatre was opened in 1917, and was located on Blue Island’s then main entertainment center, adjacent to the Grand Opera House. After a fire in 1924, the Grand Opera House was rebuilt as a movie house, showing mostly B-grade features, while the Lyric Theatre showed the more mainstream Hollywood films.

The Lyric Theatre was destroyed in a February 14, 1960 blaze which occured during a children’s matinee. Fortunately, everyone in the Lyric Theatre escaped uninjured. It was rebuilt and reopened, and began to show lower and lower quality films before it was finally closed in the late-1980’s.

The theatre reopened in 1995 as the Dream Street Theatre, which presented both live entertainment and movies. In a year, the Dream Street closed and was later reopened again as the Legacy Theatre, as a live theatre venue. In late-2003, the theatre received a new name again, the Oasis Edutainment Theatre and underwent a $50,000 renovation.

Currently, the Lyric Theatre building is unused.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 18 comments)

Paul Fortini
Paul Fortini on December 10, 2008 at 6:11 pm

If I remember clearly, this theatre was once a Plitt.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on April 14, 2009 at 8:56 pm

Excellent Lyric pic from the 80’s here:

View link

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 17, 2010 at 8:25 am

Prior to its destruction by fire on St. Valentine’s Day in 1960, the Lyric was operated under lease by Publix Great States Theatres. The new house was to be leased to Square Amusement Co., a subsidiary of Great States.

I’m wondering of the seating capacity of 939 currently listed above was for the old Lyric? Two issues of Boxoffice (March 26, 1962, and February 4, 1963) each give the seating capacity of the rebuilt theater as 800. The 1962 item mentions that seats “…of the new wide variety….” were planned for the new Lyric.

LouisRugani
LouisRugani on February 1, 2011 at 12:26 am

The LYRIC Theatre facade is featured toward the beginning of the 2011 picture “The Rite”, though it doesn’t figure into the plot. The letterboard in the storyline and in real life reads “Redemption Theater”.

wolfjr79
wolfjr79 on July 21, 2011 at 12:51 am

Man…I remember seeing He-Man and She-Ra: The Secret of the Sword here along with Transformers the Movie (the animated one of course). Saw Flight of the Navigator here. Good times.

dogvscat
dogvscat on January 4, 2012 at 12:08 am

The current owner is the granddaughter of the long time owner. She is rallying support to try and re-open the theatre and is eager for community activism to do so. There is an upcoming meeting at the theatre. Sorry I don’t have that information currently.

thelyricmovienight81
thelyricmovienight81 on June 17, 2012 at 9:14 am

Please visit facebook.com/thelyricmovienight for listings and times

YnoBill
YnoBill on October 26, 2014 at 5:32 am

Joe Vogel on April 16, 2010 at 11:25 pm Prior to its destruction by fire on St. Valentine’s Day in 1960, the Lyric was operated under lease by Publix Great States Theatres. The new house was to be leased to Square Amusement Co., a subsidiary of Great States.

I’m wondering of the seating capacity of 939 currently listed above was for the old Lyric? Two issues of Boxoffice (March 26, 1962, and February 4, 1963) each give the seating capacity of the rebuilt theater as 800. The 1962 item mentions that seats “…of the new wide variety….” were planned for the new Lyric.

The reason for the reduced seating capacity of the rebuilt theater was the new one didn’t have a balcony

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on December 1, 2019 at 5:04 pm

This is likely the pre-fire Lyric facade.

https://www.loc.gov/item/2017845159/

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on December 1, 2019 at 5:15 pm

There was an earlier Lyric Theatre that was next door to the Grand Opera House. Evidence in the vintage postcard posted to both pages.

http://cinematreasures.org/theaters/10833/photos/63350

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