The theatre was opened on New Year’s Day in 1906 as the Majestic Theatre. The architects of the venue were Edmund R. Krause and George L. and Cornelius Rapp, and it was the first venue in Chicago to cost over one million dollars. The Majestic Building, the tallest building in Chicago when it was first built, became a Chicago landmark, and the theatre instantly became a popular destination for vaudeville acts.
In the 1920s, it became part of the famous Orpheum Circuit and host to legendary luminaries Harry Houdini and Lily Langtry. In 1932, during the Great Depression, the Majestic closed its doors and remained empty for 15 years. In 1945, the theatre was purchased by the Shubert Organization and reopened as the Sam Shubert Theatre. The venue was restored and redecorated, although much of the original design was retained. The Shubert stage became home to an astounding array of classic plays and musicals such as CAROUSEL, SOUTH PACIFIC, GUYS AND DOLLS, THE KING AND I, MY FAIR LADY and A CHORUS LINE. In 1991, the Nederlander Organization purchased the Majestic Building from the Shubert Organization. The Shubert continued to host a wide array of quality theatrical productions, including the Chicago premiere of RENT, CHICAGO—THE MUSICAL, CABARET and the Pre-Broadway engagements of THE GOODBYE GIRL and Julie Andrews in VICTOR/VICTORIA.
Since the formation of Broadway In Chicago in 2000, the rich history of exceptional entertainment has continued with the Pre-Broadway World Premieres of Billy Joel and Twyla Tharp’s MOVIN’ OUT and MONTY PYTHON’S SPAMALOT. In 2005, the theatre closed for a glorious multi-million dollar restoration and was reopened in May 2006 as the LaSalle Bank Theatre, and later the Bank of America Theatre in 2008. Since that time, the venue has hosted the long run of the musical phenomenon JERSEY BOYS, the Pre-Broadway World Premiere KINKY BOOTS, and the Broadway Blockbuster THE BOOK OF MORMON.
At a press conference on December 8, 2015, Broadway In Chicago and The PrivateBank announced a dynamic partnership that is committed to bring the best of Broadway to our Chicago Theatre District. The PrivateBank Theatre officially opened with the production of CABARET, on Tuesday, February 9, and is now the new home of Broadway’s biggest hit, HAMILTON.