Recap: Historic Theatre Series | Mayan Theatre

About the tour: Saved from destruction in 1984, the Mayan Theatre has been a South Broadway landmark for decades. Tour goers heard from Chris Citron, the “godmother of the Mayan Theatre,” about the fascinating history and architecture of this Art Deco movie palace, from its intriguing role in the 1930s movie industry to its melodramatic escape from the wrecking ball.

About the building: Designed by noted Denver architect Montana Fallis, the 1930 Art Deco Mayan Revival-style theatre is one of a few surviving movie houses adorned in pre-Columbian motifs. The interior and exterior features jaguars, masks and various flora inspired by Aztec and Mayan designs. Its facade is accented by ornamental, polychrome details, including an unmissable terra cotta “chief” on the marquee. The Mayan resumed operation in 1987 after renovation, the most elaborate of Denver’s old theaters to remain in operation.

About the tour guide: Chris Citron, President of Friends of the Mayan, is an attorney with a background in historic preservation law. She has an extensive background in community organizing and cultural affairs. Chris is an experienced tour guide and has been sharing her knowledge of the Mayan Theatre for years. She is a former board member of the Denver Architecture Foundation.