Sheridan Theatre

4036 N. Sheridan Road,
Chicago, IL 60613

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Auditorium of the Sheridan Theatre, Chicago, IL in 1928

The Sheridan Theatre opened by the Ascher Brothers on February 12, 1927 with a stage presentation of Florenz Ziegfeld’s “Sally” and on the screen Billie Dove in “Sensation Seekers”. It was designed by Chicago-based architect J.E.O. Pridmore, who later designed the Nortown Theatre (1931), in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood.

The Sheridan Theatre had 3,000 seats in its balconied auditorium, which featured, like San Francisco’s Castro Theatre, a mock-tented ceiling, ringed by a Roman-style freize depicting a procession of gods. The Sheridan Theatre also had a small stage, an orchestra pit and a Wurlitzer organ, opened by organist Edmund Fitch. Unlike Pridmore’s other theatres, which were mostly Atmospheric in style, the Sheridan Theatre was a Neo-Classical/Italian Baroque combination, complete with Corinthian columns, Roman statuary, and a proscenium arch topped by golden lions supporting a crowned shield. By 1929 it had been taken over by Fox Theatres and renamed Fox Sheridan Theatre. In early-1934 it was taken over by Essaness Theatres Corp.

After the Sheridan Theatre was closed in 1951, it was acquired by a synagogue which used the former theatre for their house of worship for fifteen years, until moving to another home. In the early-1970’s, the Sheridan Theatre was reopened again for movies, this time Spanish-language, and renamed the Teatro El Palacio. It lasted into the early-1990’s, when the theatre again closed and was demolished.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft, Ray Martinez

Recent comments (view all 58 comments)

BobBill
BobBill on January 7, 2014 at 1:19 pm

I have to retract my comment about the Sheridan not looking like much from the front, after the pic link supplied by KenC MCIntyre…I forgot about the front. The reddish marble stone was part of the synagogue.

That pic does give one an idea how immense and grand the house was…

The bar that is mentioned by Ken C was the Beritz. Black reflective marble outsides…was a honky tonk joint when I live across the street…live music and more in the 40s through the 50s.

telliott
telliott on January 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm

Wow, they tore THIS down?! Shameful

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on May 25, 2015 at 9:21 pm

Halloween 1985 poster designed by and courtesy of long time Chicago graphic artist Shelley Howard added.

rso1000
rso1000 on December 8, 2015 at 10:34 pm

Interesting article that appeared in the Chicago reader….
http://m.chicagoreader.com/chicago/now-featured-at-the-sheridan-theatre-squatters-politics-and-two-plans-for-rehabilitation/Content?oid=877825

Khnemu
Khnemu on March 7, 2017 at 6:01 pm

You can own the terra cotta sculptural group from the pediment of the Sheridan Theater for a mere $199,000. http://worthgalleries.com/chicago-sheridan-theatre-terracotta-facade

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 7, 2017 at 7:21 pm

Thanks. Too bad they copied the description directly from the Sheridan’s Cinema Treasures page without giving proper credit.

DavidZornig
DavidZornig on March 14, 2018 at 3:12 pm

1947 photo added courtesy of Uptown Update.

Khnemu
Khnemu on March 16, 2018 at 6:01 am

The Sheridan had been acquired by Essaness by 1934 according to The Film Daily dated February 2, 1934:

“The Sheridan theater, Essaness house, has discontinued vaudeville.”

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on March 20, 2018 at 8:13 am

I never knew that huge frieze had been purchased and reinstalled on another building. Amazing to learn it still exists after all these years. I wonder what that building is.

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