Providence Performing Arts Center

Theatre, Hall or Arena

General Information: 220 Weybosset St
Providence, RI 02903
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Official Website
No Smoking Handicap Accessible


Interest Areas: Music / Singing, Novelty Acts, Theatre

The Theatre, which is now called the Providence Performing Arts Center, was opened as a Loew's Movie Palace on October 6, 1928. It was designed by George and C.W. Rapp of Chicago, brothers who became renowned as one of the finest teams of theatre architects in America.

Over the years, the theatre has survived many changes - it was nearly demolished in the seventies. Now, it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and plays a vital role in the City's ongoing renaissance. The stagehouse was expanded in 1995, a state-of-the-art sound system was installed in 1996, and the Grand Lobby and Arcade were painstakingly restored to their 1928 splendor in 1998. It is now a world-class facility hosting first-class Broadway touring shows, plays, contemporary acts, concerts, and much more. In place of the Morgan is a rare, five-manual Mighty Wurlitzer organ; the 28' by 51' movie screen again shines brightly with current and classic films.

In 2000, PPAC got a facelift on the when the addition of the Providence vertical and full color LED marquee. The entire Theatre was re-carpeted in 2000 in the pattern that duplicates the original from 1928. The summer of 2002 saw the installation of a state of the art computerized HVAC system which provides patrons with a more comfortable and enjoyable theatre-going experience. Standing ground water and asbestos were also removed from the basement during this project. During the summer of 2003, additional sprinklers, smoke, and heat detection equipment were installed within the Theatre, along with new lobby audiovisual equipment including plasma televisions. In summer of 2004, the open fire escapes along Page Street were replaced with covered, closed stairways for safer egress of patrons, branch wiring to fixtures and receptacles throughout the Theatre and Lobby were replaced, and a custom designed and built chandelier was placed in the main dome of the Theatre.
In the summer of 2005, the auditorium's seats were replaced and an elevator installed that carries patrons between the Lobby and all other leves of the theatre. The beauty of the Theatre combined with the excellence of the productions makes every event at the Providence Performing Arts Center a work of art.

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Last Modified: November 8, 2009 at 8:53 AM