Historic Detroit

Every building in Detroit has a story — we're here to share it

Detroit Opera House - Old photos

The Broadway entrance in 1931, during the Opera House's days as the Paramount

The Detroit Opera House in 1931, during its days as the Paramount

A crowd crams into the seats in the 1960s

The Opera House in the 1980s

The Opera House in 1985, boarded up after it had closed following a stint showing soft-core porn

The Opera House in 1963, when it was showing movies as the Grand Circus

The Opera House in 1973, when it was the Grand Circus Theatre

The Capitol's orchestra in 1927

The lobby off Broadway in 1929. The only pieces that are missing today are the large attraction boards and the brass rails in the front.

The main stairway off the lobby in the early 1920s, shortly after opening

The stage from the balcony in the 1920s

Looking out at the seats from the stage in the 1920s

The original splendor of the Detroit Opera House in the 1920s, during its Capitol Theater days, doesn't differ a lot from today's. However, it is unknown what happened to the chandeliers that hung from the Oregon grills on both sides of the auditorium.

The Detroit Opera House in May 1923, during its Capitol Theatre days

The Capitol Theatre in March 1922, shortly after it opened

The Madison side of the Opera House in 1929, in its Capitol Theatre days

The Capitol as seen from Grand Circus Park in 1926

The Broadway facade in 1923, shortly after the theater opened as the Capitol

The Detroit Opera House in 1927, in its Capitol Theatre days

The Broadway-Capitol in 1946

Among the last movies to show at the theater: "Jailbait Babysitter."

The restored auditorium

The stage and a peek at the incredible rigging used to handle large stage shows.

The Madison Street facade at night

The Detroit Opera House complex