Hilary Robertson / 16 October, 2016


By Lisa Nico, KUTV 2

The long-awaited George S. and Dolores Dore’ Eccles Theater will open its doors this week with a 3-day celebration event starting Friday, October 21st.

City and county officials will also speak at a dedication ceremony for the public and benefactors this Tuesday, October 18th at 10 am.

The George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Theater is Salt Lake City’s newest performing arts center. The state-of-the-art theater features the 2,500-seat Delta Performance Hall, a black box theater, event and rehearsal spaces, a multi-story grand lobby, the outdoor McCarthey Plaza, and a galleria which will connect the theater to the adjacent 111 Main office tower.

“It’s a connector between City Creek Center and the Gallivan Center and the Main Street businesses. And it’s a way to really bring about more activity downtown,” said Salt Lake City senior advisor, Katherine Potter. “We think it’ll be able to bring more people to restaurants and shops.”

Designed by world-renowned architect Cesar Pelli, co-owned by Salt Lake City and Salt Lake County, and operated by the Salt Lake County Center for the Arts, the Eccles Theater is nestled in the heart of Salt Lake City.

Friday’s premier will feature national headliners and local talent. The evening performance will feature Tony award-winning performer, Brian Stokes Mitchell and “Smash” television actress and Tony-nominated Broadway performer, Megan Hilty. They will be joined on stage by a myriad of Utah’s finest performing artists including Ballet West, the University of Utah Department of Theatre, Repertory Dance Theatre, and Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company.

Rita Moreno will serve as the M.C. for Friday’s event.

“[Moreno] is one of only a dozen living performers who has received an EGOT, E-G-O-T,” explained Potter, which stands for Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony.

According to Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski, the event will serve as a historical moment for the city and beyond.

“The opening of the beautiful Eccles Theater will bring new opportunity for the arts right in the heart of the downtown cultural core,” said Mayor Biskupski. “This space will bring with it unique creative energy helping further establish Salt Lake City as the arts and culture destination it is today.”

Potter said the building is open to the public.

“It’ll be a really exciting space not just for retail but also public art and cultural discoveries,” said Potter.

People are allowed inside to explore, share, and learn during normal business hours.

“This is a public building. And I think it’s a challenge because this is a space when, during the day, the doors will be open and people will be able to come in here and experience a lot,” said Potter. “[Homelessness] is something that our downtown is facing. We do have a members of the homeless population who are in buildings and inside buildings.”

The Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office will provide security and ensure safety.

“We want to make sure it’s a pleasant experience for our patrons, as well. But we do want to look out for our homeless population and make sure that if we do find people that are coming into this place frequently, that we’re able to direct them towards the help that they need.”

The performance begins at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, October 21. Tickets range from $50 -$200 and may be purchased through www.ecclestheateropening.com or by calling 801-355-arts. Black tie is encouraged. All ticketholders are invited to join a post-show celebration on Regent Street.

To learn more about the full line-up of performers and other Grand Opening weekend events, please visit www.ecclestheateropening.com. To learn more about the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Theater, please visitwww.ecclestheater.com.

Find out more information on the Eccles Theater Fact Sheet:


131 South Main Street, Salt Lake City.

Opening Date

Eccles Theater is scheduled to hold its Premier Performance on October 21, 2016. A three-day Grand Opening Celebration is planned for October 21 – October 23.

Building Components

  • 2,500 seat, state-of-the-art Delta Performance Hall
  • 150-250 seat flexible Black Box theater and event space
  • Rehearsal studio
  • In-venue restaurant, Encore Bistro, with indoor and outdoor dining
  • Five-story open lobby and gathering space
  • Patron and donor lounges
  • Upper-level outdoor terrace overlooking Main Street

Construction Highlights

  • 185,000 square feet
  • 10,223 square feet of stage flooring

Cost of Theater

The design and construction budget for the new theater is $126 million.

Economic Benefits

  • 115 new permanent jobs will be created after the theater opens.
  • Construction will create more than 1,600 jobs and generate $200 million countywide.
  • Over $9 million will be generated annually in direct, indirect and induced spending.
  • $1 million in new annual property tax revenue.


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