Peery's Egyptian Theater is a fully restored, 800-seat palace movie theater that also serves as a community theater and a venue for performing arts. It is an Ogden, Utah
cultural arts facility. In 1978, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
This 1924 theater, meant to resemble the courtyard between two Egyptian temples, has been restored to its full splendor. The modern stage house can hold live theater, dance, choral, symphonic, and multimedia acts, as well as films. It also has space for films.
The theater now hosts a performance series, a film series, and is a Sundance Film Festival screening site. In addition to playing movies, they conduct dance festivals, musical performances, and other events.
Peery's Egyptian Theater was built after the Arlington Hotel burned down in 1923. Harman and Louis Peery conceived a design to construct "The Showplace of the West," a huge theater. The assignment was given to the architectural company Hodgson & McClenahan, which is known for many key Wasatch Front landmarks. In many of the most famous western theaters, like Grauman's Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, there are Egyptian-themed shows.
The décor is Egyptian-inspired, featuring complex designs and figures on the outside and interior. It's obvious to detect and there's no mistaking it. All of the Egyptian art designs were made by artisans who researched actual hieroglyphics and ancient Egyptian sculptures. They also contributed a few of their own. One depicts one of the Peery brothers, who is intoxicated and leaning on a post. It was humorous to this brother, and he kept it.
Construction on the cleared acreage left by the Arlington Hotel, which also happened to be the site of the Peery's first Ogden house, began in 1923. The Egyptian opened on July 3, 1924, after a ten-month wait. Zane Grey's Wanderer of the Wasteland was the first film to screen in the new theater. The Mighty Wurlitzer, the Egyptians' famed pipe organ, was used to accompany this silent film in "natural color."
The characteristic, beautiful terra-cotta front of Peery's Egyptian Theater, with all the original colors and Egyptian decorations and décor, stands out on Washington Blvd.
Peery's Egyptian Theater auditorium was built to resemble an Egyptian courtyard, which means the stage area is surrounded by columns. The auditorium's seats are all on a single, steeply slanted floor, so everyone can see the show clearly from their seats.
The Egyptian Theater at Peery's contains two private boxes, each with 15 seats. On the mezzanine level, the boxes are located. The sky on the ceiling can still be changed from day to night. During the 1990s restoration, this feature was brought back to life.Union Station Ogden, UT
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