About the Theatre
The historically registered Indiana Theatre opened its doors on January 28, 1922 on the corner of 7th Street and Ohio Street. Tickets were sold for a mere 40 cents at the time. The silent film “Cappy Ricks” produced by Paramount Pictures’ was the starring attraction that night, accompanied by the Indiana Symphonic Orchestra. Though some things have changed since that historic night, the magic created then continues today.
The Indiana Theatre not only holds a special place in the hearts of Terre Hauteans; it also holds a unique place in history as the first prototype for atmospheric theater design. Famed architect John Eberson – creator of the atmospheric style of architecture that would later take America by storm – incorporated his atmospheric concepts into the Indiana Theatre by bringing the outdoors in through stylized motifs, color, and lighting. As the original owner T.W. Barhydt put it, the Indiana Theatre is “more than a theater, more than a picture show, more than a great orchestral concert, more than a building of architectural beauty and comfort,” it was an experience all its own. As a guest enters and walks through the Theatre, he is embraced by lighting and colors that emulate the lifecycle of day created through patterns and colors inspired by 17th century Spanish Andalusia. In the Rotunda the colors shift from light pastel in the churriguerisque to fierce reds and golds of a sunrise in the railing, leaving the remnants of dawn in the deep burgundys of the dome sky.
Guided into the promenade, the Lobby acts as the transitory stage of daytime, decorated by 38 male and female statues along both sides and an ornate ceiling with even more faces to fill the lobby with life. Entering into the mystery of nightfall in the Auditorium, the guest experiences the deep tones of reds, blues, and browns against the vibrant atmospheric lighting system which has evolved since the original state-of-of-the-art 1922 system.