Variety arts Theater
(Los Angeles, CA)

The Variety Arts Theater, designed by architecture firm Allison & Allison, opened in 1924. Some of the character defining features of the Italian Renaissance style theater include a gold-leafed coffered ceiling and faux marble columns.

The theater was originally built for the Friday Morning Club, a social and political organization for women. The main theater, referred to as the Playhouse, would help generate financial support for the building. During its time as the Playhouse, the theater played host to speakers such as Eleanor Roosevelt and Dorothy Parker.

Al Jolson and Eddie Cantor hosted live radio shows that were broadcasted from the Playhouse, and it is rumored that Clark Gable got his start performing Romeo and Juliet at the theater in 1925. By the mid-1970s the theater was falling into disrepair.

After several attempts to reuse the theater for live performances and other uses such as a nightclub, the building is currently being rehabilitated for a large church. The Variety Arts Theater is listed as a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.


General Contractor 
Decorative Cast Stone Restoration
Wood Door and Window Restoration
Architectural Woodwork Restoration
Concrete Restoration
Selective Demolition
Exterior Painting

Design Team

Owner: Robhana Management, Inc
Restoration Contractor: Spectra Company
Original Architect: Allison & Allison
Architect: Shlemmer Algaze Associates
Historic Consultant: Historic Consultants
Structural Engineer: Nabih Youssef & Associates
Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing Engineer: Vision

The Greenest Building Is One That Already Exists