Egyptian Theatre continues construction for 90th birthday


After a groundbreaking ceremony in May, The Egyptian Theatre has been under construction to add modern elements to the theater including air-conditioning, larger bathrooms and new carpeting.

By Parker Otto

DeKALB — As the summer comes to an end, the Egyptian Theatre, 135 N. 2nd St., continues to undergo construction which began May 1, following a groundbreaking ceremony. 

The construction will not dampen the Egyptian’s fall season of live musical acts and film series. Construction on the Egyptian Theatre has been running smoothly with renovations proceeding on schedule, according to Jeanine Holcomb, Egyptian Theatre Marketing and Communications Director. 

“Parts are behind, but others are ahead, so overall we are still hoping for construction to completely end in early 2020,” Holcomb said. 

“Our top priority has been to ensure our events run smoothly during this construction,” Holcomb said. On days without rehearsals or events, there may be construction occurring, but on days with events, the public will enjoy themselves without any interference.” 

One goal of the construction is to expand the theater’s bathrooms and concession stands. 

“With more bathroom stalls and larger concession stands, long lines before shows, during intermissions and after shows will no longer be a problem for attendees,” Holcomb said. 

The Egyptian Theatre will also become more energy efficient with new lights and a new heating system, according to its website. 

“Our old boiler system had basically two settings: on and off,” Jeanine Holcomb said. “Our new heating system will allow more choices which will allow the theatre to save energy.” 

As a result of the renovations, the Egyptian Theatre will contain air conditioning, which will allow the venue to host programs in the summer, previously impossible due to high temperatures. When asked what summer programming would do for the theater, Jeanine Holcomb replied “We [Egyptian Theatre Staff] are very excited for the extra revenue which will not only bring more money into the theater but will also attract more people to the downtown DeKalb area.” 

As the Egyptian nears its 90th birthday in December, this construction will usher in a new era for the theater. “It’s fantastic that this is all happening now as the theater turns 90,” Holcomb said. But as the fall starts, the Egyptian Theatre, rather than completely shut down, will stay open and continue to entertain the people of DeKalb.