The Shrine Auditorium is a landmark large-event venue in Los Angeles, California. It is also the headquarters of the Al Malaikah Temple, a division of the Shriners. It was designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument (No. 139) in 1975.
Opened in 1926, the current Shrine Auditorium replaced an earlier 1906 Al Malaikah Temple which had been destroyed by a fire on January 11, 1920. The fire gutted the structure in just 30 minutes, and nearly killed six firefighters in the process.
In the late 1960s, the Shrine was referred to as "The Pinnacle" by the audiences of rock concerts.
In 2002, the auditorium underwent a $15 million renovation that upgraded the stage with state-of-the-art lighting and rigging systems, and included new roofing and air conditioning for both the Auditorium and Expo Center, modernized concession stands, additional restrooms, repainting of the Expo Center, and a new performance plaza and parking garage. The entire complex follows a Moroccan architectural motif.
The old Shrine Auditorium, 1905.
The old Shrine Auditorium, 1910.
The Shrine Auditorium in 1990, before the 2002 renovations.
The new auditorium was designed in the Moorish Revival style by San Francisco-based theater architect G. Albert Lansburgh, with local architects John C. Austin and A. M. Edelman associated. When built, the auditorium could hold 1,200 people on stage and seat an audience of 6,442. An engineer who consulted on the project said that the steel truss supporting the balcony was the largest ever constructed.
The Shrine Auditorium seats approximately 6,300 people (reduced during the 2002 renovation from the original 6,700 capacity) and has a stage 194 feet (59 m) wide and 69 feet (21 m) deep.
The Auditorium features two boxes above the orchestra level holding 40 people each and seven loges on the balcony holding between 36 and 47 seats each (total capacity of the loges: 274). Of the remaining seats, 2,964 are on the orchestra level and 2,982 on the balcony level.
Adjacent to the Shrine Auditorium is the Shrine Exposition Hall.
View of the building from University Park.
Royal Street vestibule
Jefferson Blvd. vestibule
Detail of stained glass window
The Shrine Auditorium has hosted a number of events, mainly for entertainment:
- List of convention centers in the United States
- List of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monuments in South Los Angeles
- List of Registered Historic Places in Los Angeles
- Bridges Auditorium
- Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
- Shrine LA! Shrine Auditorium and Expo Hall Official Site
- Shrine Auditorium at Glass Steel and Stone (archived)
- Image of Stevie Wonder and Patti LaBelle performing at the Shrine Auditorium, 1978. Los Angeles TimesPhotographic Archive (Collection 1429). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.