Orchestra Hall

Also known as: Max M. Fisher Music Center
3711 Woodward Ave., Detroit, Michigan


Historic American Buildings Survey Allen Stross, Photographer, October 1970 GENERAL VIEW, LOOKING WEST

Photo taken for the Historic American Buildings Survey


Street View 


Orchestra Hall resembles the typical theatre of its day, with a restrained and elegant adaptation of Renaissance style that preceded the exuberant eclecticism of the next decade. It was designed with emphasis on concert requirements, but was fully equipped also for use as a motion-picture theatre. Its appearance and superb acoustics reflect the ability of C. Howard Crane, a Detroit architect who became one of the most notable national and international architects of the "Movie Palace." Crane's Orchestra Hall, Detroit's first true concert hall, was considered to be one of the finest in the country. Built originally to obtain the services of Ossip Gabrilowitsch as permanent conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, during his tenure the hall was the scene of performances by many renowned artists. Later, as the Paradise Theatre, it offered outstanding concert jazz. It was the beneficiary of a successful community-wide historic preservation effort that began in 1970. -- Historic American Buildings Survey

A Michigan Historical Marker here reads: Orchestra Hall

This concert hall was built in 1919 as the home of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. It was constructed to satisfy the demand of its music director, the internationally esteemed Ossip Gabrilowitsch, that a suitable hall be built. Architect Charles Howard Crane designed this brick and limestone structure which was completed in five months. The symphony moved to a larger facility in 1939. Two years later this hall became the Paradise Theatre featuring jazz and vaudeville until 1951. Scheduled for demolition in 1970 the building was acquired by Save Orchestra Hall, Incorporated. These concerned citizens restored the badly deteriorated Orchestra Hall, which now continues its tradition of acoustical excellence and quality music in Detroit.

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on April 16, 1971
Reference number
Architectural styles
Victorian: Renaissance; Other architectural type; Italian Renaisance
Area of significance
Performing Arts
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
A - Event
Property type
Historic function
Music facility
Period of significance
Significant year


20th Century (29,076)
Brick (42,462)
Built 1919 (463)
Built during 1910s (8,827)
Charles Howard Crane (1)
Detroit, Michigan (232)
Have Street View (46,424)
Limestone (8,192)
Meeting hall (1,544)
Michigan (1,951)
Private owner (54,398)
Renaissance (1,333)
Victorian (19,698)
Wayne County, Michigan (350)

Update Log 

  • November 12, 2012: New photo from Rattrak
  • June 21, 2012: New Street View added by wdzinc
  • June 2, 2012: Imported photos from HABS/HAER