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Alabama State Historic Theatre

Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts

Alabama State Historic Theatre

Adopted on May 21, 1993

The Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts was designated the state historic theatre in 1993 by Act no. 93-26 on May 21, 1993.

The Alabama Theatre opened on December 16, 1927, in downtown Birmingham, and was named the "Showplace of the South" by the movie vanguard Adolph Zuker. The theatre was once a part of the Paramount Theatre Chain. Numerous stars of Broadway and the Silver Screen have appeared on the stage, such as, John Barrymore, Roy Rogers, and Tallulah Bankhead. The theatre is also home to "The Mighty Wurlitzer" organ.

Alabama State Historic Theatre:
Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts

Alabama State Historic Theatre

For 55 years , the Alabama Theatre held the citizens breathless with its beauty and elegance. In late 1981, the theatre closed it's doors. In 1987, Birmingham Landmarks, Inc., a non-profit organization, purchased the theatre and turned the movie palace into a Performing Arts Centre.

Each year, the Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts hosts more than 250 evenings of entertainment. The theatre annually draws 400,000 patrons into downtown for a wide variety of events: broadway shows, ballet, opera, rock & roll, parties, weddings, fashion shows, beauty pageants and even classic films.

In 1998, the Alabama underwent a complete restoration. Gold leaf and other paint was cleaned or replaced, seats were replaced or recovered, and some carpet and drapes were replaced. A handful of very dedicated volunteers led by Cecil Whitmire and his wife, Linda, resurrected the Alabama and began operating it to pay the $680,000 mortgage the Birmingham Landmarks had agreed to take on.

Some other interesting facts include:

  • The building was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979
  • In 1993 the Alabama Theatre received the designation of Official Historic Theatre of Alabama in 1993
  • In 2011 The Alabama Theatre received the Building of the Year Award from the Alabama Architectural Foundation. The award is presented to the one building statewide that best exemplifies how architecture can provide a meaningful impact on the citizens of Alabama in the past, present and future.

The Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts was designated the state historic theatre in 1993 by Act no. 93-26.

THE ALABAMA THEATRE FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS
1817 Third Avenue North
Birmingham, Alabama 35203

Sources:
Acts of Alabama, May 21, 1993
Discover the Magic of the Alabama Brochure, April, 1995

Alabama Law

The law designating the Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts as the official Alabama state historic theatre is found in the Code of Alabama 1975, Title 1, Chapter 2 Section 1-2-32

Title 1 - GENERAL PROVISIONS.
Chapter 2 - STATE SYMBOLS AND HONORS.
Section 1-2-32 - State historic theatre.

Universal Citation: AL Code § 1-2-32 (2013)
Section 1-2-32
State historic theatre.

The Alabama Theatre for the Performing Arts is designated as the official State Historic Theatre for the State of Alabama.
(Acts 1993, No. 93-26, p. 58; Acts 1993, No. 93-34, p. 67; Acts 1993, No. 93-240, p. 344.)

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