While walking down State Street near Madison last weekend, I happened to notice a very-faded ghost sign tucked away behind a bunch of other buildings. Because of its location, I could only see the latter half of it, where I could read the following:
I jumped to the conclusion that the word had to be “Majestic,” and I figured it was probably an old sign for a long-gone theater. However, I looked it up online and discovered that The Majestic Theatre was actually the old name for the still-standing Bank of America Theatre around the corner, which the sign is apparently painted on.
The name “The Majestic” was used by the theater from the time it was built in 1906 and used as a vaudeville theater until 1932, when it closed during the Great Depression. It was the Shubert Theatre when it reopened in 1945. It was restored in 2006 and became the LaSalle Bank Theatre. Two years later, LaSalle Bank was acquired by Bank of America, hence the new name.
Given the ticket prices – 25-50-75 cents for shows – the sign had to have been painted around the 1920s. FYI, seats to see Chicago at the Bank of America Theatre next February are $58-$279 each.