The restored and just-reopened NorShor Theatre in downtown Duluth hosts its first performance tonight — the regional premiere of the Broadway blockbuster “Momma Mia!”, performed by the Duluth Playhouse. Greater Downtown President Kristi Stokes says about the historic theatre which originally opened in 1910, “‘Grand’ and ‘awe-inspiring’ I think are the two words that come to mind. For those who remember the NorShor and have been in it, it is just bringing so much of that back to life.” Stokes says the restored NorShor will showcase and lift up the local and regional arts community.
Restoration of the historic NorShor Theatre took 19 months and cost over 30 million dollars, financed through a public-private partnership. The NorShor originally opened as the Orpheum Theater vaudeville house in 1910 and hosted W.C. Fields, Jack Benny, the Marx Brothers and other major acts. In 1941, it was reconfigured as a movie house and became the NorShor Theatre. In recent years, NorShor had fallen into great disrepair and even contained a strip club before closing for major renovation.