The Audian Theatre has been part of social fabric of life in Pullman for nearly a century. Built in 1915, this building originally housed Pullman's fifth silent movie house, the Grand Theater. The building was remodeled in 1930, reopening as the Audian Theater in October 1930.
Backstory and Context
In late 1915, the Grand Theater opened in the newly constructed Jackson Block and entertained residents until closing in 1928. Remodeled as the Audian Theater in October of 1930 and expanded again in 1936 following the demolition of an adjoining garage, the several-hundred-seat, single-screen theater featured the latest movie technology and, together with the Cordova Theater, served as one of Pullman’s principal movie houses into the early twenty-first century. Original light fixtures and a balcony distinguish the extant auditorium.1
At the time of the Audian Theater’s opening in 1930, only two other theaters were operating in Pullman: the Cordova and the Liberty. Other theaters came and went over the twentieth century, but with the exception of a brief closure in the mid-1990s for upgrades, the Audian remained in operation until the 2000s. Unlike many older, single-screen theaters across the country which evolved into music venues, community theaters, and other functions, the Audian always functioned as a movie house.The Audian was updated in the 1990s, but remains largely unchanged from the 1930s. Its architecture and decor are excellent examples of theaters from the golden age of movie theaters. The Audian closed in 2014 but as of this writing, the Pullman Civic Theatre hopes to renovate the building and use it as an arts center.
The Audian Project. Pullman Civic Theatre. Accessed November 03, 2017. http://pullmancivictheatre.org/about-us/the-audian-project/#theater.