"Plaid Tidings" to open renovated theatre

Sunday, December 9th 2007, 1:33 pm
By: News 9

The Plaza Theatre on NW 16 Street was a retreat for patrons in the 1930s. The theatre was also a place to escape the Oklahoma heat.

"It was the first movie house to have air conditioning," Bart Wells of Lyric at the Plaza said.

The theatre was also the first place to show movies. Many memories were captured.
"Oh my gosh, I saw a movie there. I saw ‘Citizen Kane' there for the first time," Wells said in reference to what former patrons have remembered.

The lights went out in 1979 and the theatre officially closed.

"The theatre was vacated and sat empty," Wells said. "There was just garbage pretty much everywhere."

City leaders assisted in turning on the lights again.

"About 18 months ago we started the renovation project," Wells said.

Along with a new name, the old theatre has undergone a full renovation. A new sound and lights system was installed as well as new aesthetically pleasing décor added.

The Lyric at the Plaza has improved on its old design, but sustained one major change. No longer will audiences watch a movie on a screen, but will watch actors on stage.

"We really wanted to become a year-round theatre for this region, but to do that we needed our own home," Wells said.

A live performance marks the official opening of the new theatre.

"This weekend we are opening ‘Forever Plaid: PLAID TIDINGS.' It's a four-man show, 1950s doo-wop style music," said Wells. "Now that we are open it's truly our hope that when people walk in they get a flood of memoires of what it was like before."

Performances of "Plaid Tidings" run this weekend through Dec. 23.