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Arts and Entertainment

Broadway Is Getting Its Own Rad Festival This Weekend

The Theater at the Ace Hotel which still has the United Artists signage (Photo by Jason via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr)
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It's been seven years since L.A. Councilmember José Huizar launched his plan to revitalize the historic Broadway Corridor in downtown. And in celebration of this anniversary, the city is throwing an all-out free event and block party this Saturday night that lets folks explore old theaters, see musical performances and film screenings and even get involved in something called "chessboxing."

One of the coolest things about Night On Broadway, which runs from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Broadway between 3rd to 11th streets, is that you can visit six of Broadway's historic theaters, some of which aren't usually open to the public; they include the Million Dollar, Los Angeles, Palace, Tower, Orpheum, and the Theatre at Ace Hotel. Each theater has their own full lineup of events taking place.

Some of the highlights include a screening of Fitz Lang's 1927 film Metropolis at the gorgeous and breathtaking Theatre at Ace Hotel; short films, and burlesque and magic shows at the Million Dollar Theatre; a String Theory performance at the Orpheum Theatre, where musicians and dancers will transform the entire space into gigantic music instruments; and chessboxing at the Tower Theatre, which is exactly as it sounds—opponents will alternate between three-minute chess games and three-minute boxing matches. You can also expect a vaudeville-inspired flash mob performance, a casino speakeasy, a 3D blacklight art installation, and even a performance by Sexy Sax Man, who we really want to see. Watch this video below to understand why:

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There will also be a festival on the street, where there will be pop-up booths, food trucks, a vintage car show, and live music performances on a stage. Plus, if you feel so inclined to venture out, restaurants on Broadway will be open, and Grand Central Market will also be open late for the Night on Broadway crowd.

The predecessor to this event was last year's Day on Broadway, which had some similar events with an added scavenger hunt and race. The purpose of Huizar's 10-year revitalization plan for the historic Broadway Corridor is to "reactivate Broadway’s historic theaters and long-underutilized commercial buildings," according to the Night on Broadway website. Since then, the area has changed with restaurants like Umami opening up shop, and high-end retailers moving in.

To get to Night on Broadway, you can take the Metro Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square. There's also $7 flat rate parking fee at the City's Pershing Square Parking Garage for cars entering after 5 p.m. and leaving before 2 a.m. More info here.

Here's a map of the event. For a larger version of the map, click here.


Night on Broadway runs on Jan. 31 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Broadway between 3rd to 11th streets. More info on the event schedule can be found on their website here.