The Michigan Theater is one of my favorite places in Ann Arbor. The beautiful architecture, pre-show organ music, and a unique selection of films and programs just makes me want to visit again and again. Most recently, we attended a free showing of the new documentary, Miss Representation (it was excellent) and we recently enjoyed Sing-Along Sound of Music (I’ve been wanting to go for years!).
Designed by Detroit-based architect Maurice Finkel and built in 1928, the theater seats 1700 and features the theater’s original 1927 Barton Theatre Pipe Organ, orchestra pit, stage, and elaborate architectural details. The organ was built for the Michigan Theater and installed in 1927. Designed to accompany silent movies and vaudeville, was one of 7,000 installed in American movie palaces between 1915 and 1930. It is one of the few remaining organs which exists in its original location. The organ is played Wednesday through Sunday for all evening movies, making it one of the most heard theater organs in the country and is one of our favorite features of seeing a movie at the Michigan Theater.
The Michigan Theater is the current home of the annual Ann Arbor Film Festival, the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, and the Ann Arbor Concert Band, and has been named 2006 Outstanding Historic Theatre by the League of Historic American Theaters.
Dave and I are Michigan Theater members, which means we get discounted tickets, parking validation, bar privileges and we get to enjoy member-only activities like the ice cream social prior to A Night at the Opera complete with our own pair of complementary Groucho Marx glasses.