The City Opera House is the oldest of three historically intact Victorian opera houses in Michigan and boasts a rich history as a cornerstone of culture in the Grand Traverse region. Since opening its doors in 1891, this elegant historic theater has hosted everything from plays, concerts and operettas, to gala balls, social functions, community festivals and celebrations. The “Grand Old Lady,” as she is lovingly known, has served as a community gathering space for more than a century. The City Opera House was added to National Register of Historic Places in 1972. Soon after, a committed group of inspired citizens led efforts to faithfully restore this cultural gem to its former grandeur and preserve it for generations to come. Its dramatic barrel vault ceiling, fresco paintings, gold leaf accents and Victorian styling offer residents and visitors a vibrant, one-of-a-kind venue for a diverse array of events.
Today, the City Opera House is a non-profit destination attraction for quality arts and cultural entertainment, educational programming, and public and private gatherings. Its versatile design allows the venue to function as a state-of-the-art 700-seat theater while providing the flexibility to clear the main floor of seating for large gatherings. Unparalleled Victorian charm, superior acoustic quality, and an accessible location all add up to a unique public environment in the heart of downtown Traverse City.