(The following is a press release from Laurel Little Theatre. For ticket information on April 8th's costume party, e-mail LLTLaurelMS@aol.com or call 601-428-0140.)
In April of 1927, Laurel's historic downtown Arabian Theatre opened the doors and showed its very first feature. After five decades of presenting movies, it closed in 1976 and was dark for just a year before Laurel Little Theatre bought the building and built out a stage and made it their own home base.
To celebrate the Arabian's 90th Birthday, LLT is holding a grand party on April 8th at 7:30PM as a Pinehurst Room Fundraiser.
This will be a fun 1920's costume party (costumes optional) with drinks and hors d'oeuvres along with a showing of the very first film projected on the Arabian screen back in 1927.
That feature was titled "It" and starred Clara Bow, the top box office actress of the day. That silent movie solidified her fame, and afterwards, she was always called "the IT GIRL."
The movie premiered in Los Angeles and New York City in February, 1927. It broke box office records all over the country, and Laurel audiences got to see it in April that year at the grand opening of downtown's new Arabian Theatre.
All prints of that movie were lost for many decades, but after years of no remaining copies, a single nitrate film of it was discovered in the city of Prague in the Czech Republic. It was restored, and LLT will be showing that movie during the upcoming party.
"It" was a romantic comedy about a shop girl that set her sights on the handsome and wealthy boss of the department store where she worked.
LLT is in the middle of a million dollar fundraiser to build a new Pinehurst Room on the side of the Arabian - exactly where the old Pinehurst Hotel stood from 1922 until 1988. They're currently about a third of the way to raising the funds to reach groundbreaking, and this event will go towards that fund.
In honor of the 90th Birthday, donations for the event are $90 a couple ($45 for singles) and you can R.S.V.P. at 601.428.0140.
The event is being co-chaired by Robin Robinson, Sanderson Farm's Director of Organization Development and Corporate Communications, and her husband, Public Service Commissioner, Sam Britton. Hors d'oeuvres will be catered by Marilyn Fuquay.