Milwaukee Mitchell St. fights to save Modjeska Theatre

By Georgia Pabst of the Journal Sentinel

The Modjeska Theatre, the elegant but aging architectural grand dame of Historic Mitchell St., stands empty while many in the community scramble to secure its future.

“The Modjeska is as significant to Mitchell St. as the Riverside is to Wisconsin Ave.,” said Ald. James Witkowiak, who owns a funeral home and other properties on the street. “I believe it can be saved. I don’t even want to think of an alternative.”

Built in the 1920s as a vaudeville and movie palace, the theater at 1134 W. Mitchell St. was named after Helena Modjeska, a renowned Polish actress who specialized in Shakespearean roles. In the ’40s, the theater showed Polish films to cater to the large Polish community on Milwaukee’s south side.

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