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The Ellen Theatre

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  • Yellowstone
  • Theatre/theater
The Ellen Theatre is a marvelous reflection of the glorious playhouses of yesteryear. This lavishly decorated palace, designed by renowned architect Fred Willson, was built by the sons of Nelson Story, a founder of Bozeman, and named for the family matriarch - Ellen. That's quite a present for mom...

Restored in 2008 by Montana TheatreWorks, The Ellen is now a shining showcase for great musical theatre, plays, community events, local performers and world-renowned talent. Sold-out audiences have enjoyed a wide variety of programs, from comic Paula Poundstone to cowboy legends Riders In The Sky, from former NBC anchorman Tom Brokaw discussing To Kill A Mockingbird to music legend Arlo Guthrie.

Opened in 1919, The Ellen originally hosted variety shows, silent movie premieres, school plays, weddings, symphony concerts and even an opera featuring a live elephant. This historic town landmark truly was the place to be -Friday night with your favorite sweetheart, the Saturday kiddie matinee and the Sunday family concert were staples of life at The Ellen.

A favored stop on the vaudeville circuit, programs discovered during the renovation feature such stars of the day as Vivian Vance (Ethel from I Love Lucy), famous fan dancer Sally Rand and the legendary ventriloquist Edgar Bergen along with his wise-cracking wooden sidekick Charlie McCarthy. However, like a tragic melodrama, there was a cruel twist in the plot and The Ellen, along with other similar theatres across the country, suffered decades of disrepair. The world of TV, DVD rentals and video downloads by-passed Bozeman's magnificent monument to a bygone era and, sadly, the spotlight slowly faded.

Fortunately, this story has a happy ending. After a lot of elbow grease, polish and paint, it's "Curtain Up" once again at The Ellen. If you're in the neighborhood, drop by for a visit or take in a show. When you see her, we're sure that you'll agree, the ol' girl truly deserves a standing ovation.
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Street Address
17 West Main Street
Bozeman, MT 59715 Get directions
Phone
Mailing Address
PO Box 28
Bozeman, MT 59771
Season
All Year
Hours
Box Office: Wednesday - Friday: 1:00pm - 3:00pm Day of Theatrical/Musical Show: 1:00pm - Curtain
Payment Methods
Cash, Master Card, Paypal, Personal Check (In State), Personal Check (Out Of State), Travelers Checks, Visa
Discounts
Child Discount, Senior Citizens

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Special direction map

Special Directions

The Ellen Theatre is located at 17 West Main Street in downtown Bozeman.