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Suburban World Theater in Uptown Minneapolis could reopen as a concert venue

A DJR Architecture rendering of how the Suburban World's interior could look after renovations.

The Suburban World Theater could be entering a new era as a concert venue.

Doug Hoskin has offered to buy the Uptown Minneapolis space, but the deal has not closed yet, according to the Star Tribune. Hoskin plans to work with DJR Architecture to convert the theater into a concert venue and event space with a 450-person capacity. The room would feature moveable seating that would allow the space to serve as a concert venue and a banquet space, according to the Star Tribune.

“The project is dependent on approval by the city’s Heritage Preservation Commission, which is scheduled to discuss the plans next Tuesday,” reports the Star Tribune.

The theater was built in 1927, when it was known as the Granada Theater — “the most elaborate theater ever constructed outside the loop district in Minneapolis,” reported the Star Tribune at the time. “Equipped with both Vitaphone and Movietone, the big screen productions and talking movies will be shown immediately after they have finished their downtown first run showing.”

The design was inspired by Spanish architecture, one of the only theaters of its kind in the state. It was also notable because the style inside was that of an atmospheric auditorium which was meant to make the audience feel like they were watching a movie outside under the stars. The room has twinkling lights, trees, and even a moon that used to rise and set during the movie.

In 1954 the theater was renamed the Suburban World Theater. In the 1980s, the auditorium and exterior were added to the National Register of Historic Places. The theater closed in 2003, then re-opened as a cinema grill before closing once again in 2011.

The potential restoration of the Suburban World Theater is the latest in a series of theater restorations including the Palace Theatre in St. Paul and the NorShor Theater in Duluth.