Joy Theater
Joy Theater (New Orleans) Grand Opening 1947.jpg
The Joy Theater, in downtown New Orleans, opening day, Feb. 7, 1947.
Location1200 Canal Street
New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Coordinates29°57′23″N 90°04′26″W / 29.956403°N 90.074008°W / 29.956403; -90.074008
OwnerNOLA Theatre District LLC
TypeIndoor theater
Seating typeOrchestra, balcony

The Joy Theater, named after owner Joy Houck, is a theater and historic landmark built in 1947 on Canal Street in downtown New Orleans, Louisiana. Renovations in 2011 transformed the former movie palace into a multi-purpose theater for live music, stand-up comedy, private functions, and corporate events. The theater's iconic marquee sign was restored, as was the building's original art deco architecture.[1][2]


On February 7, 1947, the Joy Theater opened at a cost of $275,000, with seats for 1,250 patrons. Hailed as "New Orleans' newest and most modern film temple,"[2] the theater was equipped with a crying room, a glass-enclosed area behind the back row that enabled parents with young children to enjoy the show without disturbing the other patrons.[3][4] The Joy was built by long-time theater operators Joy Houck (the theater's namesake) and Levere Montgomery, Sr. The architect was B. W. Stevens. Lover Come Back, starring Lucille Ball, was the opening feature.[4]

In 2003, "finally succumbing to the competition from megaplexes with stadium-style seating and a dozen or more screens," the Joy Theater closed.[2]

In August 2005, the flood following Hurricane Katrina inundated the structure.[4]

In July 2011, the Joy was purchased by NOLA Theatre District LLC.[5] It reopened in December 2011.[6]

See also


  1. ^ Joy Theatre Has New Owners, Renovation Plans – New Orleans City Business Archived 2011-09-14 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c Joy Theatre in Downtown New Orleans has Happier Days Ahead – Times Picayune
  3. ^ Canal Street: New Orleans’ Great Wide Way – Pelican Publishing
  4. ^ a b c No More Joy: The Rise and Fall of New Orleans Movie Theaters – Rock Productions Archived 2012-04-25 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Joy Theatre Purchased - Times Picayune
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-04-29. Retrieved 2012-05-01.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)