The Studebaker Theater is housed in the historic Fine Arts Building

In 1898, The Fine Arts Building created the historic The Studebaker Theater. Originally built to house vaudevillian performances, but later expanded into large productions in the 1920’s. During the subsequent years, performances by Bob Hope, Peter O’Toole, and Vincent Price graced the stage with their immense theatrical skills. The Studebaker Theater continued on throughout the years for being known as one of the most important live theatrical venues in the City of Chicago.

In the 1970’s, the city underwent a downturn in live theater attendance and The Studebaker was converted into four seperate motion picture cinemas. Eventually in the year 2000, The Studebaker was closed entirely. In 2005, The Fine Arts Building, which houses the Studebaker Theater, underwent new ownership. Renovations to restore The Studebaker finally began in 2015.  

Today, The Studebaker Theater, which holds 725 seats, reopened for live performances in 2016. 

Photo Credit:  Historic Theatre Photos / Mike Hume 


2016 Renovation