The F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts has enjoyed a long and colorful history that began in 1938 when it first opened its doors as the Comerford Movie Theater. The theater was constructed upon a lavish Art Deco design, equipped with technological advancements and a seating capacity of 2047. In its heyday, the opulent lobby of the theater was an architectural marvel, with fluted columns, rose-tinted mirrors and rich shades of bronze, illuminated by a magnificent chandelier that is today the only surviving feature of the original lobby. The theater was a fitting homage to the chain's founder, but was soon sold to the Penn Paramount Company. The subsequent sale of the Paramount Theater in 1977 marked the beginning of its decline, even though it was listed as a National Historical Place in 1978. In 1985, the theater was purchased by Albert Boscov, who brought it back to life, restoring the majestic venue to its former glory. The new lobby is richly inlaid with Art Deco stylings as a homage to the original theater. The theater not only hosts film screenings, but also live performances and other special events.