Wednesday, December 27, 2017

December 27th...This Day in History

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Radio City Music Hall opens 1932


At the height of the Great Depression, thousands turn out for the opening of Radio City Music Hall, a magnificent Art Deco theater in New York City. Radio City Music Hall was designed as a palace for the people, a place of beauty where ordinary people could see high-quality entertainment. Since its 1932 opening, more than 300 million people have gone to Radio City to enjoy movies, stage shows, concerts, and special events.
Radio City Music Hall was the brainchild of the billionaire John D. Rockefeller, Jr., who decided to make the theater the cornerstone of the Rockefeller Complex he was building in a formerly derelict neighborhood in midtown Manhattan. The theater was built in partnership with the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) and designed by Donald Deskey. The result was an Art Deco masterpiece of elegance and grace constructed out of a diverse variety of materials, including aluminum, gold foil, marble, permatex, glass, and cork. Geometric ornamentation is found throughout the theater, as is Deskey’s central theme of the “Progress of Man.” The famous Great Stage, measuring 60 feet wide and 100 feet long, resembles a setting sun. Its sophisticated system of hydraulic-powered elevators allowed spectacular effects in staging, and many of its original mechanisms are still in use today.
In its first four decades, Radio City Music Hall alternated as a first-run movie theater and a site for gala stage shows. More than 700 films have premiered at Radio City Music Hall since 1933. In the late 1970s, the theater changed its format and began staging concerts by popular music artists. The Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular, which debuted in 1933, draws more than a million people annually. The show features the high-kicking Rockettes, a precision dance troupe that has been a staple at Radio City since the 1930s.
In 1999, the Hall underwent a seven-month, $70 million restoration. Today, Radio City Music Hall remains the largest indoor theater in the world.

(More Events on This Day in History)
  • American Revolution

  • 1780 Americans raid Hammonds Store
  • Automotive

  • 1941 Office of Price Administration begins to ration automobile tires
  • Civil War

  • 1864 Hood’s army crosses the Tennessee River
  • Cold War

  • 1979 Soviets take over in Afghanistan
  • Crime

  • 1900 Carry Nation smashes bar
  • Disaster

  • 1975 Coal mine explodes in India
  • General Interest

  • 1831 HMS Beagle departs England
  • 1968 Apollo 8 returns to Earth
  • 1978 Spanish king ratifies democratic constitution
  • 2007 Pakistani politician Benazir Bhutto assassinated
  • Hollywood

  • 1927 Agnes Nixon, “Queen of Modern Soap Opera,” born
  • Literary

  • 1904 Peter Pan, by James Barrie, opens in London
  • Music

  • 1895 The legend of “Stagger Lee” is born
  • Old West

  • 1846 Doniphan’s Thousand takes El Paso
  • Presidential

  • 1944 FDR seizes control of Montgomery Ward
  • Sports

  • 2004 Peyton Manning breaks single-season touchdown pass record
  • Vietnam War

  • 1966 U.S. and South Vietnamese troops attack Viet Cong stronghold
  • 1969 U.S. and North Vietnamese forces battle near Loc Ninh.
  • World War I

  • 1918 Poles take up arms against German troops in Poznan
  • World War II

  • 1942 Germans form the Smolensk Committee to enlist Soviet soldiers

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