13-15 S. Saginaw Street,
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Previously operated by: Butterfield Theaters
Architects: George J. Bachmann
Previous Names: Grand Prix
The Eagle Theatre is the epitone of the late vaudeville, early movie theatre. It is a fine example of the use of Moorish design influences on a cinema building. The three-story facade is masonry which is finished primarily in stucco and red quarry tile. At each side of the facade are vertical stucco towers decorated at the top with a corbeled cornice and at the base with red quarry tile. At the second floor of these towers the windows are surrounded by a Moorish or horseshoe art treatment of red quarry tile. A decorative mansard style roof of clay tile shingles caps each bay. The two storefronts at the smaller bays are original are are highlighted by bronze glazing members, cast iron trim, and decorative leaded glass transoms.
The primary significance of the Eagle Theatre is derived from the uniqueness of the interior facilities originally constructed and the quality of its architectural detail. The Eagle Theatre was constructed on the site of Pontiac’s oldest movie house in 1927. The building was leased, shortly after its construction, to the Butterfield Theatres. The interior of the theatre displayed many Moorish elements, such as the Moorish arch proscenium and keyhole arches between the columns along the side aisles. On the second floor is a large room called the “Green Room” where performers and audience traditionally met after the performances.
The building’s third floor contains nine apartments originally intended to house travelling vaudeville performers. These are particularly unique because of their Art Deco style bathrooms and Pullman kitchens which must be some of the earliest prefabricated complete kitchen units in existence today.
Throughout the interior of the building, finishes and colors are original and in superb condition making the theatre one of the most architecturally complete in the State of Michigan and giving a truer picture of a facility constructed for the golden era of the American cinema.
The theatre became home to the nightclub, Industry and in 2016 is a nightclub named Elekticity.
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