It had been over five years since a performance last took place at the Greenwich Odeum, but at the end of last month, life was restored to the venue that was once a staple of East Greenwich’s Main Street. Originally known as the Greenwich Theater when it first opened in 1926, it started out as a vaudeville house before changing to a movie theater, but closed in 1990 as multi-screen theaters became more popular. It reopened four years later in 1994, with its new name “The Odeum” and saw a successful run last for 13 years, before having to close due to fire code restrictions. Major renovations and upgrades were put into place to make this historic theater safe and accessible for people today.
Having seen its share of highs and lows, The Odeum has once again made a grand re-entrance after a five year absence. “It’s very exciting that after being closed for five years we’ll once again be able to contribute greatly to the social and cultural landscape of not only East Greenwich, but all of Rhode Island,” says Frank Prosmitz, President of the Greenwich Odeum. “We are most thankful to the large group of volunteers, board members and town officials — and, of course, the Champlin Foundations — for their support and help in making this happen once again. We’re here because of how successful this theater was for 13 years before closing in 2007. We’re here because of all of those who helped build the theater into what it became, and all of those who are now mapping out and developing its future.”
Upcoming performances for the month of February will include the Greg Abate Quartet with Phil Woods (February 9) as well as Chris Jason and the Sinatra Live Big Band presenting “Sinatra At The Sands” (February 16). Here’s to the re-emergence of a classic Rhode Island venue and the many years it has left.