LIU Brooklyn will Restore Legendary Paramount Theatre to its Former Glory in Collaboration with Paramount Events Center
The historic Brooklyn Paramount Theatre at Long Island University is preparing to undergo a 24-month renovation and rejuvenation to restore the storied venue to its former glory. This transformative project is made possible by a collaboration with Paramount Events Center (PEC), under the management of Barclays Center developer Bruce Ratner, Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark, and Onexim Sports and Entertainment.
The Brooklyn Paramount opened its doors in 1928 as an ornate movie palace, one of the first to show talking pictures. The venue later introduced rock and roll and jazz to the borough, hosting artists such as Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespe, Ella Fitzgerald, and Frank Sinatra. The Paramount was converted into a gymnasium in the 1960s and was utilized by many generations of Blackbirds basketball champions. Currently used as a multi-purpose space, much of its original luster and Rococo-style architectural details have been preserved. The original 1920s Wurlitzer organ–one of only two of the model ever built—remains operational and can still been heard (and felt) throughout campus during regular tuning exercises.
“For years, I have admired the beautiful shell that remains of Brooklyn Paramount at LIU and I am excited to restore the iconic venue to its rightful splendor,” said Bruce Ratner. “I have had a long association with LIU Brooklyn and am proud to expand that relationship by joining with Onexim Sports and Entertainment to revive the storied Brooklyn Paramount and make it a world-renowned theater once again.”
“In reintroducing the historic Brooklyn Paramount at LIU Brooklyn, PEC will provide its expertise in design, development, programming, marketing, and operations to create a premier destination that enhances our commitment to arts and culture in the community,” said Eric Krasnoff, Chairman of LIU's Board of Trustees.
PEC will focus on booking emerging talent for up to 120 annual events, including music, comedy, boxing, and private programs for students. The venue will have a flexible seating configuration with a capacity of up to 3,500.
As part of the collaboration between PEC and LIU, employment opportunities and internships at Brooklyn Paramount will be available to those at the university. LIU’s academic mission will be enhanced by the opportunity to gain hands-on industry experience across multiple disciplines, including among others, arts management, media arts, sports management, performing arts, and marketing. Brooklyn Paramount will play host to academically focused programming and provide free or discounted tickets to students to select events.
“The renovation of Brooklyn Paramount is a major milestone in the history of LIU,” said Dr. Kimberly Cline, President of LIU. “It brings our commitment to the arts—and our role in the arts community—to an entirely new level for our students, faculty, and alumni, and solidifies our role as a major cultural driver in Brooklyn.”
LONG ISLAND UNIVERSITY
LIU is one of the nation’s largest private universities. Since its founding in 1926, LIU has provided high quality academic programs taught by world-class faculty. LIU offers 500 accredited programs to more than 20,000 students and has an active network of over 200,000 alumni that includes leaders in industries across the globe. LIU is recognized for its commitment to experiential education and entrepreneurial thinking. Visit liu.edu for more information.
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