Enter the Lorain Palace Theatre and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time to an era when attending a show was an event worthy of your snappiest suit and finest perfume. Thanks to the hard work of stakeholders, the theatre’s opulence remains, as does its original 1928 Wurlitzer pipe organ. “From what I understand, there are only four of them in the world,” Executive Director Christopher Pataky says of the organ. 

Because an instrument like this is so complex, it’s become somewhat of a lost art, Pataky adds. “Musically, it’s the same as any other keyboard, except it’s organic,” he says, noting there’s no modern amplification — only the pipes along the walls that carry the sound through the theatre. “Then you have the foot pedals set up for it,” he says. “So they’re playing bass notes with their feet and working with both of their hands at the same time. It’s pretty unique.”

While the theatre focuses on primarily local and independent films and various stage acts, there are a few opportunities each year to hear the historic organ. Pataky recommends keeping an eye on the Palace’s event calendar.