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County Approves Facelift for John Anson Ford Theatre

The historic Cahuenga Pass outdoor theater will get some much-needed repairs.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors today approved $9.75 million to preserve and repair the historic John Anson Ford Theatre in the Cahuenga Pass.

The complex is one of the oldest performing arts venues operating in Los Angeles. Originally named the Pilgrimage Theatre when it was built in 1920, the outdoor amphitheater was destroyed in a brush fire eight years later and then rebuilt in 1931. The site also includes an 87-seat indoor theater.

In 1976, it was renamed the John Anson Ford Theatre in honor of the late Los Angeles County supervisor's support of the arts. Ford, who died in 1983 at 100 years old, helped found the Los Angeles County Arts Commission.

Over the past several decades, the county has spent $6.1 million to keep the site and buildings in repair and up to modern safety standards. But given the age of the property, more money is needed to preserve historic features, and repair and replace building systems.

The board's vote to fund the project was unanimous.

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