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Frauenthal Theater for the Performing Arts
Muskegon Michigan

Frauenthal Theater for the Performing Arts Located in downtown Muskegon Michigan

 The Frauenthal Center for the Performing Arts combines living history with a dedication to live theater and music. Whether you’re looking for tickets to an upcoming performance, a venue for your wedding and reception, or a place to conduct that very important meeting, we trust that you will enjoy browsing our site. Our fully functioning theater is home to the West Michigan Symphony Orchestra, Muskegon Civic Theatre, the Miss Michigan Pageant, and Muskegon Community Concerts.  Spend some time learning the story behind the design of this Spanish renaissance style theater and don’t pass up the chance to take our virtual tour.The Frauenthal Center for the Performing Arts is owned and operated by the Community Foundation for Muskegon County and is recognized in the state of Michigan as a non-profit organization.


The Frauenthal Center for the Performing Arts, formerly known as the Michigan Theater, was built in 1929 by Muskegon’s own movie mogul, Paul Shlossman.

The architectural styling of the theater is Moorish, or Spanish renaissance, and gleamed with extraordinary gold accents, cherubs and griffins. The ceiling and walls were adorned with beautiful ornamental light fixtures, the carpet and opera chairs covered with rich velour, and the stage enclosed with lipstick red draperies. Many ornate carvings, arches and intricate plasterwork abound. The ceiling is surrounded by plaster shells and comes to a large acoustic dome, or oculus, in the center. Suspended from the roof hanging by steel wires, the ceiling is not unlike the suspended acoustical ceilings with which we are all familiar.

In the early 70s the Michigan Theater seemed to have an ill-fated future itself as it stood boarded up.

Fortunately a glimmer of light shined through the boards when an ad hoc group of citizens approached both the City and County of Muskegon to save the beloved theater. Finding no help from the municipalities, and with the wrecking ball ready to swing, the citizen’s group approached the Community Foundation for Muskegon County. The Foundation, small in size at that time, had received a substantial gift from a local industrialist – Mr. A. Harold Frauenthal.

Throughout the late 70s and 80s, the Community Foundation operated the Center with a variety of entertainment, including the local symphony, theater, travelogues, movies, concerts, and outside promoter events.

In 1992 the Community Foundation funded the creation of a master plan. $16 million in capitol needs were identified and Muskegon County voters were asked to approve a bond issue. Through their generosity the work began in 1998.

Schlossman and Crane’s vision of a Spanish castle had been restored to the theater.

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 Directory of Performing Arts Venues
 United States - Mid-West - Michigan
 United States - Mid-West
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Created:
02-20-2012, 7:36 pm
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