By: Aaron Ramirez
If you’re a movie lover hankering for traditional Hollywood blockbusters on the big screen, than the Music Box Theatre located at 3733 N Southport Ave is your answer. In conjunction with its classic screenings the theatre also showcases the latest art house films, film festivals, midnight cult classics, and documentaries. On average, the Music Box holds screenings for 300 movies a year.
The Music Box Theatre, originally opened August 22, 1929 and houses the largest full-time operating theater space in Chicago. It is the go to destination for independent and foreign films. During its inception the theater could seat 800 guests. In 1929 highlighted by Theatre Architecture magazine noted that the theatre “represents the smaller, though charming and well equipped, sound picture theatre which is rapidly taking the place of the ‘deluxe’ palace.”
Each visit is meant to be an experience. The blue ceiling with clouds and “twinkling” stars add to the ambiance for patrons to travel back in time and place to an open-air Tuscan palazzo. All the while, watching classics during the annual White Christmas singalong the week prior to Christmas.
In fact almost every holiday has an annual tie-in at the Music Box Theatre. New Year’s Eve has The Poseidon Adventure. Don’t forget the 24-hour “The Music Box of Horrors” festival in October. Local Chicago theatre troupe Midnight Madness troupe partakes in special midnight showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Clue and The Little Shop of Horrors. An organ was even installed to be an accompaniment for the silent film screenings and other special occasions.
Tickets for General admission are currently $11 while Special Events can vary. Though, there are many specials with the First Show of the Day Discount and The Monday special. Also become a Music Box Theatre Member who get special pricing on all regular screenings and many Special Events. The Music Box Theatre is also open to being host of private events, birthday parties, and even weddings. The Lounge & Garden are perfect for receptions with state-of-the-art technical capabilities.
Almost a century has passed since their opening film of Mother’s Boy, the red velvet curtains opened, and curtailed cinephiles to sit back, eat popcorn, and escape into the story reflecting on the silver screen. And to this day with real butter.