23 S. Main Street,
Fond du Lac,
3 people favorited this theater
Firms: Rapp & Rapp
Previous Names: Bravo Performing Arts Center
News About This Theater
- Jul 22, 2014 — Fight to save the Retlaw
The Retlaw Theatre opened to the public on December 25, 1925 as a venue for vaudeville and movies. All 1,100 seats were located on a single floor. Eventually, movies became the sole form of entertainment, and by 1941 it was operated by Alliance Theater Corp. In 1983, the auditorium was carefully divided into three screens, with a view that they could be removed at a later date if the auditorium was needed as a single space again. In December 1985 two additional screens were built at the rear of the building. The Retlaw Theatre closed in 1998.
The building was sold in 2000 and in 2001, it re-opened for a time as the Bravo Performing Arts Center. This was a venue showcasing various arts, including a dinner theatre situated in the former lobby, a dance studio on the third floor, and live theatre for children and young adults.
By early-2008, the property has been sold again and the possibility of a restoration project was mentioned, but by 2014, plans were unveiled to demolish for a car park. A grass-roots group has been formed to help to save the building, but on August 1, 2014 a developer closed on the purchase of the theatre. Demolition of the auditorium sections of the building began in fall of 2014. Only the façade and foyer area were retained.
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