Difference between revisions of "Olympic Auditorium"

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(noted its 1932 Olympic Games relevance)
 
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[[Image:GrandOly.jpg|right|300px|1990s photo]]  
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[[File:Olympic 1930.JPG|thumb|right|350px|Olympic Auditorium: May 21, 1930]]
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==History==
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One of the most storied venues in boxing history, the "Grand '''Olympic Auditorium'''," located at 1801 South Grand Avenue in Los Angeles, CA, USA, opened [http://www.boxrec.com/date_search.php?yyyy=1925&mm=08&dd=05 August 5, 1925] to a crowd of jewel-clad Hollywood film stars, prominent tuxedoed citizens, and other "common" folk. (Then-World Champion [[Jack Dempsey]] earlier had shoveled the first pile of dirt for the groundbreaking ceremony.) It had been built specifically for the 1932 [[:Category:Olympic Games|Olympic Games]], eventually hosting weight-lifting, wrestling, and boxing for those Games.
  
 
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The original seating capacity was 10,400 (this included "standing-room only" patrons). It had one huge ground floor, with the boxing ring at its center. It also had an enormous balcony that stretched diagonally away in every direction toward the roof. The boxers' dressing rooms and showers were on the southern side of the basement floor.
== History ==
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One of the most storied venues in boxing history, the "Grand Olympic Auditorium," located at 1801 South Grand Avenue in Los Angeles, CA, USA, opened [http://www.boxrec.com/date_search.php?yyyy=1925&mm=08&dd=05 August 5, 1925] to a crowd of jewel-clad Hollywood film stars, prominent tuxedoed citizens, and other "common" folk. (Then-World Champion [[Jack Dempsey]] earlier had shoveled the first pile of dirt for the groundbreaking ceremony.) The original seating capacity was 10,400 (this included "standing-room only" patrons). It had one huge ground floor, with the boxing ring at its center. It also had an enormous balcony that stretched diagonally away in every direction toward the roof. The boxers' dressing rooms and showers were on the southern side of the basement floor.
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The Olympic had weekly boxing shows during the 1920s, '30s, and '40s -- usually on Tuesday nights. It later shifted to Thursdays during the 1950s. After the [[Hollywood Legion Stadium]] shut down in 1959, the Olympic's shows moved to Fridays and Saturdays, and ran continuously until 1980. The Olympic Auditorium ran spot shows during the early 1980s, before closing later that decade. It had lost much of its luster due to age and the decay of its surrounding neighborhood.
 
The Olympic had weekly boxing shows during the 1920s, '30s, and '40s -- usually on Tuesday nights. It later shifted to Thursdays during the 1950s. After the [[Hollywood Legion Stadium]] shut down in 1959, the Olympic's shows moved to Fridays and Saturdays, and ran continuously until 1980. The Olympic Auditorium ran spot shows during the early 1980s, before closing later that decade. It had lost much of its luster due to age and the decay of its surrounding neighborhood.
  
In the late 1980s it was refurbished extensively and its seating capacity reduced to 7,500. The arena reopened for [[Oscar De La Hoya|Oscar De La Hoya's]] [[WBO]] super featherweight title fight against champion [[Jimmy Bredahl]] in 1994. As of early 2005, it still held boxing shows. In the summer of 2005 it was sold to a Korean-American church group, who renamed it the "Glory Vision Center." As a result, the famed building ended its long, glorious history as a boxing venue.
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In the late 1980s it was refurbished extensively and its seating capacity reduced to 7,500. The arena reopened for [[Oscar De La Hoya|Oscar De La Hoya's]] [[WBO]] super featherweight title fight against champion [[Jimmi Bredahl]] in 1994. As of early 2005, it still held boxing shows. In the summer of 2005 it was sold to a Korean-American church group, who renamed it the "Glory Vision Center." As a result, the famed building ended its long, glorious history as a boxing venue.
  
== Matchmakers and Promoters ==
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==Matchmakers and Promoters==
[[Image:OlyAud2.jpg|right|350px|Olympic Auditorium]]  
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[[Image:OlyAud2.jpg|right|350px|thumb|Olympic Auditorium: early 1940s?]]  
 
The many people associated with the Olympic include:
 
The many people associated with the Olympic include:
 
*[[Jack Root]]: the first manager of the Olympic. He was a former World Light-Heavyweight Champion.
 
*[[Jack Root]]: the first manager of the Olympic. He was a former World Light-Heavyweight Champion.
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*[[Joe Levy]]: Matchmaker from 1925 to early 1927.  Also shared matchmaking duties with Wad Wadhams at the Olympic for a brief period in 1931. He managed [[Mexican Joe Rivers]] and served as a matchmaker or promoter at a number of other boxing venues as well.
 
*[[Joe Levy]]: Matchmaker from 1925 to early 1927.  Also shared matchmaking duties with Wad Wadhams at the Olympic for a brief period in 1931. He managed [[Mexican Joe Rivers]] and served as a matchmaker or promoter at a number of other boxing venues as well.
 
*[[Frank Garbutt]]: A prominent Los Angeles businessman who was a major driving force in the [[Los Angeles Athletic Club]]; the owner of the Olympic Auditorium for many decades.
 
*[[Frank Garbutt]]: A prominent Los Angeles businessman who was a major driving force in the [[Los Angeles Athletic Club]]; the owner of the Olympic Auditorium for many decades.
*[[Jack Doyle]]: promoter from early 1927 to 1933.
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*[[Jack Doyle (Promoter)|Jack Doyle]]: promoter from early 1927 to 1933.
 
*[[Wad Wadhams]]: matchmaker from early 1927 to 1933. Shared some of the matchmaking duties with Joe Levy for a brief period in 1931.
 
*[[Wad Wadhams]]: matchmaker from early 1927 to 1933. Shared some of the matchmaking duties with Joe Levy for a brief period in 1931.
 
*[[Tom Gallery]]: promoted cards at the Olympic for awhile after Doyle. He was a boxing man who was involved in staging cards in Hollywood and San Francisco during the 1920s and the 1930s in addition to the Olympic. In addition, he was a network executive during television's early days.
 
*[[Tom Gallery]]: promoted cards at the Olympic for awhile after Doyle. He was a boxing man who was involved in staging cards in Hollywood and San Francisco during the 1920s and the 1930s in addition to the Olympic. In addition, he was a network executive during television's early days.
 
*[[Joe Waterman]]: a longtime boxing man who was the matchmaker at the Olympic starting in 1935 with a great deal of success.  Had several stints as the matchmaker at Olympic, the last one ending in 1942.
 
*[[Joe Waterman]]: a longtime boxing man who was the matchmaker at the Olympic starting in 1935 with a great deal of success.  Had several stints as the matchmaker at Olympic, the last one ending in 1942.
 
*[[Luis Magana]]: did the Spanish-language publicity from the late 1930s to 1984, before moving to Boston, MA, where as of 2005 he still resides.
 
*[[Luis Magana]]: did the Spanish-language publicity from the late 1930s to 1984, before moving to Boston, MA, where as of 2005 he still resides.
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[[Image:GrandOly.jpg|right|350px|thumb|The Olympic Auditorium in the 1990s]]
 
*[[Suey Welch]]: March 1937 to April 1939 as matchmaker, promoter, and manager.
 
*[[Suey Welch]]: March 1937 to April 1939 as matchmaker, promoter, and manager.
 
*[[Jimmy Murray]]   
 
*[[Jimmy Murray]]   
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*[[Cal Working]]: matchmaker for a brief period from 1956 to 1957.
 
*[[Cal Working]]: matchmaker for a brief period from 1956 to 1957.
 
*[[George Parnassus]]
 
*[[George Parnassus]]
*[[Don Fraser]]
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*[[Don Fraser (promoter)|Don Fraser]]
 
*[[Mickey Davies]]
 
*[[Mickey Davies]]
 
*[[Rogelio Robles]]
 
*[[Rogelio Robles]]
 
*[[Don Chargin]]: matchmaker during the 1970s.
 
*[[Don Chargin]]: matchmaker during the 1970s.
  
== Trivia ==
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==Trivia==
 
*Silent movie comedian Buster Keaton's 1926 boxing comedy [[Battling Butler]] and Clint Eastwood's 2004 drama [[Million Dollar Baby (Film)|Million Dollar Baby]] were filmed, in part, in the Olympic Auditorium.
 
*Silent movie comedian Buster Keaton's 1926 boxing comedy [[Battling Butler]] and Clint Eastwood's 2004 drama [[Million Dollar Baby (Film)|Million Dollar Baby]] were filmed, in part, in the Olympic Auditorium.
 
*Final boxing show was held June 10, 2005, with Vernie Torres winning an 8 round technical decision over Salvador Casillas.
 
*Final boxing show was held June 10, 2005, with Vernie Torres winning an 8 round technical decision over Salvador Casillas.
  
== External Links ==
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==External Links==
 
*[http://www.grandoly.com/ Official Site]
 
*[http://www.grandoly.com/ Official Site]
 
*[http://members.tripod.com/~newsbrown/olympic.html Some history]
 
*[http://members.tripod.com/~newsbrown/olympic.html Some history]
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*July 12, 1982 ''Sports Illustrated'' magazine article: [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1125687/index.htm]
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*''Uppercut Magazine'' article: [http://www.uppercutmagazine.com/Reflections.html]
 
*See also, [[Boxing in the Los Angeles Area: 1880-2005]]
 
*See also, [[Boxing in the Los Angeles Area: 1880-2005]]
  
[[Category:California Venues|Olympic Auditorium]]
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{{DEFAULTSORT:Olympic Auditorium}}
[[Category:Los Angeles Venues|Olympic Auditorium]]
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[[Category:California Venues]]
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[[Category:Los Angeles Venues]]

Latest revision as of 02:32, 16 April 2012

Olympic Auditorium: May 21, 1930

History

One of the most storied venues in boxing history, the "Grand Olympic Auditorium," located at 1801 South Grand Avenue in Los Angeles, CA, USA, opened August 5, 1925 to a crowd of jewel-clad Hollywood film stars, prominent tuxedoed citizens, and other "common" folk. (Then-World Champion Jack Dempsey earlier had shoveled the first pile of dirt for the groundbreaking ceremony.) It had been built specifically for the 1932 Olympic Games, eventually hosting weight-lifting, wrestling, and boxing for those Games.

The original seating capacity was 10,400 (this included "standing-room only" patrons). It had one huge ground floor, with the boxing ring at its center. It also had an enormous balcony that stretched diagonally away in every direction toward the roof. The boxers' dressing rooms and showers were on the southern side of the basement floor.

The Olympic had weekly boxing shows during the 1920s, '30s, and '40s -- usually on Tuesday nights. It later shifted to Thursdays during the 1950s. After the Hollywood Legion Stadium shut down in 1959, the Olympic's shows moved to Fridays and Saturdays, and ran continuously until 1980. The Olympic Auditorium ran spot shows during the early 1980s, before closing later that decade. It had lost much of its luster due to age and the decay of its surrounding neighborhood.

In the late 1980s it was refurbished extensively and its seating capacity reduced to 7,500. The arena reopened for Oscar De La Hoya's WBO super featherweight title fight against champion Jimmi Bredahl in 1994. As of early 2005, it still held boxing shows. In the summer of 2005 it was sold to a Korean-American church group, who renamed it the "Glory Vision Center." As a result, the famed building ended its long, glorious history as a boxing venue.

Matchmakers and Promoters

Olympic Auditorium: early 1940s?

The many people associated with the Olympic include:

  • Jack Root: the first manager of the Olympic. He was a former World Light-Heavyweight Champion.
  • Tom S. Andrews: the first matchmaker at the Olympic. He perhaps is better known for his record books.
  • Joe Levy: Matchmaker from 1925 to early 1927. Also shared matchmaking duties with Wad Wadhams at the Olympic for a brief period in 1931. He managed Mexican Joe Rivers and served as a matchmaker or promoter at a number of other boxing venues as well.
  • Frank Garbutt: A prominent Los Angeles businessman who was a major driving force in the Los Angeles Athletic Club; the owner of the Olympic Auditorium for many decades.
  • Jack Doyle: promoter from early 1927 to 1933.
  • Wad Wadhams: matchmaker from early 1927 to 1933. Shared some of the matchmaking duties with Joe Levy for a brief period in 1931.
  • Tom Gallery: promoted cards at the Olympic for awhile after Doyle. He was a boxing man who was involved in staging cards in Hollywood and San Francisco during the 1920s and the 1930s in addition to the Olympic. In addition, he was a network executive during television's early days.
  • Joe Waterman: a longtime boxing man who was the matchmaker at the Olympic starting in 1935 with a great deal of success. Had several stints as the matchmaker at Olympic, the last one ending in 1942.
  • Luis Magana: did the Spanish-language publicity from the late 1930s to 1984, before moving to Boston, MA, where as of 2005 he still resides.
The Olympic Auditorium in the 1990s

Trivia

  • Silent movie comedian Buster Keaton's 1926 boxing comedy Battling Butler and Clint Eastwood's 2004 drama Million Dollar Baby were filmed, in part, in the Olympic Auditorium.
  • Final boxing show was held June 10, 2005, with Vernie Torres winning an 8 round technical decision over Salvador Casillas.

External Links