Veterans Memorial Auditorium (The Vets) is located on the revitalized Avenue of the Arts. With just over 1,900 seats, The Vets is acclaimed for its unique combination of size and intimacy, enjoyed by both audience and performer. On the National Register of Historic Places, The Vets is celebrated for its proscenium stage and exquisite interior.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium is managed by Professional Facilities Management, the company that brings you the Providence Performing Arts Center (PPAC). Under the guidance of the Rhode Island Convention Center Authority and PPAC/PFM team, The Vets will undergo major renovations in the coming months/years to add more patron conveniences and improve the overall theater experience for all of our valued guests.
History of The Vets
The 1920′s saw the rise of grand Masonic complexes across the United States. As part of the movement, the Rhode Island Freemasons planned an ambitious complex designed by Osgood & Osgood, one of the era’s noted architectural firms. Work began in 1927, and foundations and building frames were constructed before economic times changed drastically in 1929. Work was halted, and the project lay dormant until the 1940′s.
The State of Rhode Island took over the project in the 1940′s. Near the end of World War II, the community pushed to complete the theater component as Rhode Island’s first professional performing arts venue. On January 27, 1950 the theater officially opened.
Over the first three decades of operation, scores of legendary performers illuminated The Vets stage, including such classical and contemporary greats as Pavarotti, Nureyev and Tony Bennett. In the 1990′s a community groundswell to save The Vets, coupled with public investment to partially refurbish and restore the theater, provided the impetus for resuming performances and community traditions. Today Veterans Memorial Auditorium is a treasure for all to experience.
Veterans Memorial Auditorium
One Avenue of the Arts
Providence, RI 02903
83 Park Street
Providence, RI 02903
The Vets Before Renovations