Georgia Theatre History
Home of the Athens YMCA from 1889 until 1919, the original building on this site became a music store, movie house, hotel, Masonic Temple, furniture company and Sears Roebuck store before being replaced by the Elite Theatre in 1935. Except for a brief period as a Methodist church, this theatre – later renamed the Georgia Theatre – has served as a significant performance venue for emerging and established musicians from Athens and beyond. Devastated by a fire on June 19th, 2009, this historic concert hall has been rebuilt as a labor of love with reverence for the creative spirit that Athens has long embraced. With special thanks to the people of Athens and all who worked so diligently to restore her and make her better, the Georgia Theatre stands proudly reborn.”
YMCA of Athens buys property and erects a building on the site.
Music store occupies ground floor; YMCA uses second and third floors.
Elite Theater movie house opens on ground floor and Majestic Hotel occupies second and third floors.
Elite Theater and Masonic Temple occupy the building.
Masonic Temple Association of Athens buys the building.
Dorsey Furniture Co. and Masonic Temple share the building.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. leases ground floor, basement and second floor of Masonic Temple.
Elite Theater built on foundation of YMCA building.
Serves as worship hall for United Methodist Church.
United Theatre Enterprises Inc. buys the building; continues Georgia Theatre.
Georgia Theatre shows last movie, "Brotherhood of Death," in October.
Sam Smartt, Hap Harris, George Fontaine and Sheffy McArthur team up to open Georgia Theatre as concert hall.
Sea Level performs first concert at reopened Georgia Theatre, Jan. 11.
B-52s pay to perform at Georgia Theatre, May 20.
The Police play as part of band's first U.S. tour.
Georgia Theatre closes.
Carafe & Draft Theater opens as movie house, with "Raiders of the Lost Ark" the first show, April 9.
Kyle Pilgrim and Bill "Duck" Anderson buy the building, plan to open Georgia Theatre as concert venue.
Pylon performs first concert at reopened Georgia Theatre, Oct. 2
Widespread Panic films "Widespread Panic: Live from the Georgia Theatre, Athens, GA" directed by Billy Bob Thornton.
R.E.M. plays an unannounced show at a fundraiser for Community Connection, Oct. 16.
Wilmot Greene buys Georgia Theatre.
A devastating fire guts Georgia Theatre, June 19
Georgia Theatre reopens with fully reconstructed interior as you know it today.
Agon Sports & Entertainment purchases Georgia Theatre.
AEG & Zero Mile partner to purchase Georgia Theatre alongside Variety Playhouse and Terminal West in Atlanta.