Updated: May 26
Living like a local: Kentucky Theatre.
One of my favorite gems in this city is the Kentucky Theatre, established in 1922. This is a staple location in Lexington. Located on East Main Street with a large old-fashioned cinema sign, you can’t miss it.
At six-years-old, my dad would take me to Woodsongs old-time radio hour, and my love for the Kentucky theatre started there. I would watch the live show in front of me, then my eyes would wander off the stage to the murals on the wall, the large beautiful stained-glass light above the audience, and I would watch the community around me. The atmosphere is different than your basic movie theatre. You feel as though you are in a different era.
Not only is the aesthetic of the theatre different, but they also play stunning independent films that are usually not played in your average movie theatre. I’m a little bias, but I have watched most of my favorite movies at the KY theatre; Beautiful Boy, Amy, Parasite, Call Me by Your Name, Honeyboy, American Animals (which is about a heist that took place in Lexington; I highly recommend this movie), etc.
Not only does the Kentucky Theatre incorporate showing independents with more mainstream movies but they also often play local movies, which is super cool.
Once a month, the Kentucky Theatre puts on an interactive Rocky Horror Picture Show. Drag queens perform and the audience engages in games before the movie. While the movie plays, people act out the scenes. There are callouts you are supposed to follow while the movie is being played. Hardcore Rocky Horror fans have all sorts of cues for callouts. You can slowly follow along after a while or for the “virgins” (yes, that’s what all the Rocky Horror newbies are called) you can Google the callouts.
WARNING! Draw a red "V" on your forehead or they will do it for you if you’ve never been to a show. To get the full experience, raise your hand when they call out for the virgins so you can partake in some goofy games.
The Kentucky Theatre holds many memories near and dear to my heart and I’m sure that is the same for everyone else who attends regularly. It is a beautiful space with amazing staff, and it is just different than other mainstream places. It holds so much history and character you can’t get from other movie theaters in town. This is another place that is often looked over by many new college students or young people in town. It is within walking distance from campus - go check it out!
Support local and go watch a movie at the KY theatre!