Sioux City Orpheum

520 Pierce Street,
Sioux City, IA 51104

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Poster from 1930 advertising 'Weddings' at the Orpheum, Sioux City IA.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The second Orpheum Theatre was located on Nebraska Street, built around 1919, and designed by George Rapp with 1,456 seats. The new Sioux City Orpheum Theatre was constructed in 1927 and opened on December 19, 1927 as part of the Orpheum Circuit. It was designed by architectural firm Rapp & Rapp.

This opulent vaudeville and moving picture house boasted a large 2,650-seat, three-story auditorium complete with Wurlitzer pipe organ, half circle boxes, hand carved detailing, gilded ornamentation, several crystal chandeliers, and a hand painted ceiling.

Throughout the years, the Orpheum Theatre has been used for symphony performances, ballet, special attractions, and hosted entertainers such as Fred Astaire, Tallulah Bankhead, and Katherine Hepburn.

Beginning in 1999, the Orpheum Theatre was spectacularly restored to its original appearance, reopening in fall of 2001 after having been closed for nearly a decade.

Contributed by Jeff Henjes

Recent comments (view all 16 comments)

jhenjes
jhenjes on March 16, 2002 at 8:32 am

A list of Sioux City Orpheum events is available at: http://www.orpheumlive.com/events.php

SteveBlenderman
SteveBlenderman on March 26, 2003 at 9:54 am

The beautifully restored and magnificent Sioux City Orpheum Theatre is not Art Nouveau in style. It would be much closer to baroque as far as the interior is concerned although on tours of the building it has been called French Renaissance.

JimRankin
JimRankin on June 10, 2005 at 9:39 am

Recent color photos of this theatre can be found on the site: “America’s Stunning Theatres” by photographer and stagehand Noah Kern at: http://www.pbase.com/affablebeef/theatres Comments and information may be left there without registration; such can be public view or only to Mr. Kern. Scroll down the page to find the name, and then click on the sample image above it to be taken to the page of photos of it.

kathy2trips
kathy2trips on November 29, 2006 at 4:44 pm

An excellent article with background information can be found on this link from Architecture Week: View link

PaulWolter
PaulWolter on April 15, 2007 at 5:15 pm

Does anyone have any information on the old Orpheum Theatre in Sioux City? Apparently Rapp & Rapp designed a theatre in Sioux City around 1917.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on August 3, 2008 at 10:23 am

The Fall 2008 issue of Classic Trains Magazine has a neat color photo taken in May 1948 of two Sioux City Service Co. trolley cars meeting at Turner and Villa streets. One car has on its front a poster ad for the Orpheum Theatre. Movies are Frank Sinatra in “The Miracle of the Bells” plus “co-hit” “My Dog Rusty”.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 30, 2008 at 2:39 pm

Here is a 1966 photo from Life Magazine:
http://tinyurl.com/6xum85

sgtbrooks
sgtbrooks on November 21, 2012 at 10:03 am

The Orpheum Theater at the corner of 6th & Pierce is actually the third theatre in Sioux City. The second building was known as The Capitol and was remodled by Rapp & Rapp after the building of the present day Orpheum. They did not design the theatre on Nebraska Street, only the theatre on Pierce. I worked at the Orheum from the early 1960’s to the 1970’s and writing a book.

dhaefstheatre
dhaefstheatre on January 31, 2013 at 11:45 am

PaulWolter the first Orpheum was the Victory Theatre or originally named: Lyric Theatre.

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