Exquisite Proscenium, Hidden for Decades, Now Ready for Restoration 

PALM SPRINGS, CA (April 9, 2024) The iconic Plaza Theatre in Palm Springs is undergoing a remarkable transformation. Hidden treasures dating back to the 1930s have already been rediscovered and restoration efforts are bringing the venue back to its original glory. The centerpiece of these discoveries is the astonishing reveal of the original decorative stencil work adorning the proscenium, long concealed for more than three decades by modifications made during the Palm Springs Follies era. A proscenium is the arch that serves as a frame in which the audience observes a stage during performances.

This reveal, made possible by meticulous efforts led by the renowned architectural firm Architectural Resources Group (ARG), heralds a new chapter for the historic theatre. ARG’s expertise in detailed cleaning and restoration will allow the building’s original artwork to be lovingly restored, showcasing the art deco style stencil work in its full splendor.

“We are thrilled by the amazing condition of these long-hidden decorative elements, which will enable us to clean and faithfully restore the original 1930s design elements,” said Katie Horak, Principal of ARG.

The restoration efforts will not stop there. The Plaza Theatre’s transformation will encompass a comprehensive revitalization, based on ARG’s extensive forensic analyses that revealed many layers of paint. This will enable ARG to restore the interior and exterior of the theatre to its original colors. Every detail will receive meticulous attention including the lobby ceiling, the hand-laid tiles in the bathrooms, the star ceiling, and the original chandeliers ensuring that the Plaza Theatre will shine once again as a jewel of Palm Springs.

“The Plaza Theatre’s restoration is not just about preserving history,” said J.R. Roberts, President of the Palm Springs Plaza Theatre Foundation that is overseeing the project. “It is about revitalizing our community and adding to the richness of Palm Springs’ cultural heritage.” 

As the restoration progresses, Oak View Group, the internationally acclaimed venue management group that will run the day-to-day operations of the theatre, is already seeking diverse shows to bring to the theatre, promising a vibrant array of performances, educational programs, and community events. With a focus on emerging local artists and well-known musical and theatre performances, the Plaza Theatre is poised to become a dynamic hub of cultural activity once again.

“We invite all interested parties that would like to use the theatre to explore booking opportunities at Booking@PSPlazaTheatre.org and be part of this exciting journey,” said John Bolton, Senior Vice President, Oak View Group.

The Foundation is continuing to raise funds to fully restore the Plaza Theatre. It has already raised more than $15M but must raise at least $10M more to cover the construction costs and contingencies plus startup expenses. For those who wish to contribute to the restoration efforts, many exciting naming opportunities are available including the Proscenium and the Village Relief Side walls, as well as many other options. 

The Plaza Theatre’s renovation plans, approved by the city’s Historic Site Preservation Board, will honor its storied past while ushering in a new era of accessibility and technological innovation with a commitment to preserving its original charm and character. When it is completed the Plaza Theatre is poised to reclaim its status as a cornerstone of Palm Springs’s cultural landscape.For more information and updates on the Plaza Theatre restoration project, visit  www.SaveThePlazaTheatrePS.org