Phoenix to vote on historical status for Celebrity Theatre

By Eugene Scott, The Republic | azcentral.com on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Celebrity Theatre, at the southwestern corner of 32nd and Fillmore streets, is Phoenix’s third-oldest entertainment venue.

Celebrity Theatre, at the southwestern corner of 32nd and Fillmore streets, is Phoenix’s third-oldest entertainment venue.

As Celebrity Theatre nears the 50th anniversary of its opening, Phoenix historians want to recognize it as one of the city’s most significant performing-arts structures.

The Phoenix City Council is scheduled to vote on the building’s historical designation on Wednesday, Sept. 18. The building, at the southwestern corner of 32nd and Fillmore streets, is Phoenix’s third-oldest entertainment venue, general manager Alycia Klein said.

Historical preservationists have increased their efforts in recent years to save the city’s historical buildings.

Recognizing Celebrity Theatre is a move in the right direction, said Jennifer Boucek, director of Preserve Phoenix, a non-profit organization focused on preserving the city’s historical sites.

“We have a lot of properties that are going to be coming of age in the next few years, mainly in the Mid-century Modern style, which is really Phoenix’s greatest treasure,” she said. “It’s something we have that a lot of places around the country don’t have. It makes us unique and makes us special.”

Building meets criteria

The theater’s eligibility for recognition is a “no-brainer”, Boucek said.

“It holds great significance from an architectural and structural standpoint. The design has won awards,” she said. “It meets … criteria for designation, so that makes it especially fitting to be part of our historic registry.”

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