About the Theater

A landmark of Portland cinema history, The Clinton Street Theater is one of the oldest operating moviehouses in the United States. 

Opening in 1915 as the Clinton, the theater became the 26th Avenue Theatre in 1945 and the Encore in 1969. In 1976 it reverted to its original name. Although the theater has undergone many changes over the years, it remains an intimate single screen venue with the capacity for 200 patrons.

clinton in the snowFamous for its long-standing exhibition of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, the theater is currently a magnet for independent/revival films, live music, theater productions, dance performances, sex positive theater & film, drag shows, burlesque, bellydancing and more.

The Clinton Street Theater is open to all ages and is a proud partner of local organizations that support musicians and other performers who are under 21. The theater also partners with a number of educational institutions (from day camps to universities) to provide a space where emerging filmmakers can have their work seen on the big screen. The theater is also known for working with nonprofits at affordable rates for their fundraising efforts.

With the Clinton Street Resistance Series alone (a free movie for the community on Monday nights), the venue has raised more than $40,000 for local nonprofits. In 2019 alone, close to $100,000 in ticket sales were disbursed directly to performers and filmmakers. The Clinton Street Theater is a gathering place for activists, and since Memorial Day 2020 the theater stands as a memorial to George Floyd and the marquee is used as a call to arms.

For a comprehensive history of the Clinton Street Theater, check out this blog posting that includes newspaper clippings!

Private Rentals

The Clinton Street Theater is available for private event rentals in Portland, Oregon at competitive rates. Reach out for more details.

Mission

Our mission is to support the community through the power of independent film and live events. We accomplish this mission by creating a safe and welcoming environment where people can be true to themselves while learning about the world around them. We value direct contact with each other as we build a collective, social experience--encouraging a world rich with diversity and unique points of view.

Core Values

Independent Film: We work directly with filmmakers and include them in our events as often as possible. We seek out and welcome a diversity of film genres--from experimental to vintage classics--and actively create space for films that would not be shown in other venues.

Community Building: We focus on community events (including film, music and live performance) and involve community members in all that we do. We provide a space where friendships can grow while we work together to develop life-long skills and a sense of social responsibility.

Respect and Appreciation: We try create as safe of an environment as we can for people to explore and express who they are. We provide programming from diverse points of view, supporting each other in the expression of our truths, while building acceptance and understanding.

Press

The Clinton Theater Has Six New Owners  (April, 2022)