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The Joy Theater is a 1200 capacity historic event venue on Canal Street in New Orleans operated by Winter Circle Productions, an AEG Presents company. Featuring unmatched sound and sightlines, the Joy has a state-of-the-art audio & visual system, fixed stage, three permanent bars, a multi-tiered balcony and flexible floor plans.
The Joy Theater was once one of the four original movie theaters to grace downtown New Orleans alongside the Orpheum, the State Palace and the Saenger. Designed by Favrot & Reed architects, the Joy first opened its doors in 1947 as a “modern” movie house with its iconic neon marquee and original art deco architecture. Its conception and construction coincided with the apex of the film industry and heralded the optimism and economic expansion of post-war America. For over half a century, the Joy Theater stood as a premier movie theater in New Orleans and today remains a symbol of the vibrant historic legacy of daily life on Canal Street.
First closing in 2003 then remaining closed after damage caused by Hurricane Katrina, the Joy finally re-opened its doors in 2011 when Allan McDonnel, Joe Jaeger and Todd Trosclair saw the potential of resurrecting the historic landmark and rebuilding the Joy Theater as a state-of-the-art venue for live music, theatrical performances, comedy and special events. Today, the Joy is dedicated to bringing world-class entertainment and community to the City of New Orleans and surrounding areas by forming a cultural bridge between the rich history of New Orleans and the city’s progression into the future.
In 2014, the Joy Theater partnered with Winter Circle Productions (“WCP”), a New Orleans-based promoter founded in 2009 who produces the BUKU Music + Art Project and is now the five-time recipient of the Offbeat Best Promoter Award. In 2017, two years after WCP joined AEG Presents (“AEG”) to run its new Gulf Coast regional office, WCP signed a long-term lease to operate the Joy Theater, adding the Joy to AEG’s portfolio of over 60 venues across the country. “Winter Circle’s market expertise backed by AEG’s resources is the best of both worlds for us and we’re thrilled to have them as our tenant,” says Allan McDonnel, managing partner of the Joy Theater ownership group. “Having the Joy join the network of AEG Presents venues nationwide is an exciting move for the property and yet another step in the revitalization of Canal Street.”
As of 2019, in furtherance of AEG’s dedication to optimizing the attendee experience at all of its venues, the Joy is undergoing a significant cosmetic renovation to its lobby, bars and concert hall. Since partnering with WCP and AEG, artists from all over the world in all genres have performed on the Joy’s stage including: 6LACK, Above & Beyond, Band of Horses, Blood Orange, Broken Social Scene, Cardi B, CHVRCHES, Cody Jinks, Daniel Johnston, Explosions in the Sky, Flying Lotus, Future Islands, GRiZ, The Growlers, Hannibal Burress, Iliza Shlesinger, Iron & Wine, Jason Isbell, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Jimmy Eat World, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead, Lettuce, Mac Miller, Miguel, Odesza, Papa Roach, Phantogram, Portugal. The Man, Pretty Lights, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, Run The Jewels, Slightly Stoopid, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, STS9, $UICIDEBOY$, Taking Back Sunday, Tegan and Sara, Thievery Corporation, Tipper, Tyler The Creator, Underoath & many more.