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Mitchell Kobelinski Theater at Copernicus Center (Gateway Theater)

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5216 W. Lawrence Ave.


Portage Park


Rapp and Rapp, 1930


At 2,000 seats, the Gateway Theater is among the grandest of Chicago's movie palaces. It's one of just four remaining atmospheric theaters in the city and the only one surviving by architects Rapp and Rapp. The theater was a flagship for the Balaban and Katz movie circuit for 50 years until it was purchased by the Copernicus Foundation and transformed into a Polish Cultural Center in 1981. The original interior of the auditorium was restored and has remained mostly unchanged, while the surrounding building has been converted into offices and event spaces. In 1985, the "Solidarity Tower" was erected and the exterior was renovated to resemble the Royal Castle in Warsaw, Poland.

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