Ector Theatre | Odessa Texas

This was the official website for the Ector Theatre in Odessa Texas.
An Odessa historical landmark, the restored single screen Ector Theatre featured classic and art films. It was available for rent for such purposes as group performances and meetings.
Content is from the site's 2013 archived pages as well as other sources.

The Ector closed in June 2016.

Ector Theatre
500 North Texas Street
Odessa, TX 79760
Located in Downtown Odessa




The Ector Theatre opened as a single screen on August 1, 1951 with Loretta Young in “Half Angel”. This is a beautiful Art Moderne style house done in a dark orange brick with a corner entrance. From about 20 feet down the side and wrapping around the front is done in a green granite with geometic designs in square blocks that run around from the side to the cover the entire front of the theatre.

The marquee wraps around from the side to the front of the building. The vertical is still in use and is located on the corner of the building starting just above the marquee. Each geometric block along the side and the front has the pattern lined with neon.

Ector Theater last showing tonight

Posted: Jun 25, 2016

Source: (KWES)


After more than 50 years of providing the Permian Basin with films and live entertainment
the Ector Theater is closing its doors. The city of Odessa owns the theater and leases it out to the group, Friends of The Ector Theater Inc., are closing its doors tonight after one final showing, a documentary called Mexico's Bravest Man.

"But now we're giving the key back to them because they're getting ready to start work on a convention center in downtown Odessa and the theater is going to be a part of that,” Artistic Director Don Stice said.

The Friends of the Ector Theater Inc., two of which are Stice and his wife, have run the theater since 2001, after it was closed by the city for a breath stint in the 90s. He said, though the city was the one that made the decision on closing it, retirement was already something he and his wife had contemplated.  

"They let us know that that's what they're doing and we've known for about six or eight months I guess that it was heading this way,” Stice said.

After being in charge of the upkeep for 15 years, Don and his wife feel it's time to retire...  no matter how sad it will be.

"It's going to be sad next week after we turn the key in and know that we won't be walking back into the building again to take care of it,” Stice said. “It's going to be sad, but we've had a good run."




Are you looking for a good paying sit-in gig?

The Ector Opry is looking for a lead guitar player to perform with our band at the Opry shows. Qualified musicians should possess skills necessary to learn lead parts on songs that cover a wide range of years and include country, pop, oldies rock, and new songs written by our student songwriters. Practices are required and are held each week on either Tuesdays or Thursdays evenings.  Shows are once per month and are always held on Saturday evenings at the Ector Theatre. Pay is $100.00 per show and possibly more on special occasions and events.

If you possess these skills and would like to be a part of our band please contact:

Jerry Lovell @ 432-550-9401 or 432-260-9543

Ector Theatre Opry

The Ector Theatre Opry is a new program designed to help aspiring musicians, singers, and performers. At this time we are unable to offer basic learning classes. This program is designed to take beginners who have already had instruction and help them hone their talents. Beginners as well as advanced students are welcome to participate in the shows. Weekly practices are required and dedication is paramount. For those under 18 years of age parental consent is required and parents may be required to be present at practices and concerts.

Bands and individual performers are welcome to perform in the shows. If you are an individual you are welcome to perform with our house band. Most genre’s of music are accepted but must be approved by the Board Of Directors. The Opry will be a monthly feature of the Ector Theatre.

ECTOR OPRY TO START SOON     August 20, 2013

The new performing arts program is underway and the Ector Opry is not far behind. A couple of months ago the band started working with new performer to help kick off the new Opry. While several performers have stepped up the band lost it’s lead guitar player. “This is a major setback for us. We have put out the word and placed a few ads but noone has come forward yet.  It takes time to get a band tight so it may be a few more months before things get kicked off.”, said Jerry Lovell director of the Opry.

They have several new performers and some regulars who are itching to get out there and perform for the people. Singing and performing is what they love to do. In July the Performing Arts program had their first show. The “Buy A Bulb” campaign was a great success and the group was able to purchase the lights and other equipment needed for the new shows. Together they raised more than $4,000.00 and put every dime to good use.

Some of the performers autographed promotional pictures after the show and raised $200.00 for the new Performing Arts Scholarship program. The new program is designed to help students who seek a higher education  in the music industry.

A new project is also being discussed called “Nashville Or Bust”. Several months ago the Performing Arts Department received an invite for the song writers to go to Nashville and record. They were invited to record 4 songs and have them pitched to some of the major Artist & Repertoire agents. In the music industry this an opportunity of a lifetime. The date hasn’t been set yet for the trip but plans are in the works now. The song writers, members of the Performing Arts Department and the audiences at the Ector Opry will determine which songs will be recorded. “We will need to raise quite a bit of money for this trip but the learning experience along the way, and the things they will be able to do in Nashville, will be worth it. A lot of fun is sure to be had but a lot of hard work will also be involved to get there. It’s not everyday you get a chance to go to Nashville and record in one of the premier recording studios.”, said Bruce Beaird.

Meanwhile, the Ector Opry is still in search of a lead guitar player. The rest of the band is patiently waiting for the last piece of the band. Once a new guitarist is found they will quickly work together and the Permian Basin will get to see a whole new program with lots of great music and entertainment.


WTMA merges with FOTET April 26, 2013

The The Ector Theatre  would like to announce the merging of the West Texas Music Association and the Friends Of The Ector Theatre. Bruce Beaird, president of the WTMA and the Friends Of The Ector Tehatre Executive Board of Directors made the decision to join  together to provide new and exciting  programs at the theatre.

The WTMA was formed in 1999 by Bruce Beaird and Lee Dane. as a way to help young people who want to get into the  music business. Their primary focus has always been to provide a better understanding of  the music business. “We see so many TV programs today that focus on becoming a star. The real “behind the scenes” are rarely shown. The learning process, hours days and months of practices, auditions, and how stiff the competition really is , is something you don’t see. Every year many thousands of people audition for American Idol or the Voice, and only a handful make it to the actual shows. The audition phase can be brutal and we want to help people get a better understanding of how it works. There is far more to it than buying there favorite karaoke version of a song, practicing it a few times and going for an audition. Today, even record labels expect an artist to already be groomed, seasoned, and ready before they approach them. Songwriters must learn how to make their songs commercial ready for the industry and performers need to understand what their performance is saying to a crowd. You have to sell your song and your performances in many ways. This is what the WTMA has focused on for years. We don’t guarantee to make anyone a star but we will get them closer.”, said Bruce Beaird, President of the  Friends Of The Ector Theatre Board.

The combining of the two entities will  allow the Friends Of The Ector Theatre to provide a training facility that can take a person from the classroom to the recording studio, music video productions and now on to the stage. People will now have the chance to learn and be directly involved with the music industry on a whole new level. “This will give students at all local levels a way to enter into the real world of the music business.” said Bruce Beaird.

The combining of the WTMA and FOTET also brings with it the new Performing Arts program and the Ector Opry.

Jerry Lovell, a local seasoned music veteran and former radio disc jockey, is heading up the Ector Opry. Many folks remember Jerry as the better half of the Turner & Lovell radio show that was on KYXX. He has been the announcer for 31 years at Ratliff Stadium. He brings with him his experiences and knowledge of the industry. The Opry’s will be a way for the Ector Theatre to provide quality local entertainment and give back to the community by hosting benefit concerts. These concerts are designed to generate interest in their projects as well as giving a portion of the proceeds back to those agencies. “It’s a way for us to give back to the community what has already been given to us.”, said Jerry Lovell.

In addition to the Performing Arts and Ector Opry, the group is also involved with producing and airing an internet TV show called “Music Talk Now”. The pilot show was taped and aired but after producing 3 shows they lost their show host . They hope to bring the show back  in a few months. It gave a behind the scenes look at the music industry and featured public service announcements for local non-profit agencies for their upcoming events. They are currently looking for a local show host and anyone interested in filming and editing.

“The people of our community have been so generous to the theatre through the years. Without them, Don and Toni Stice , and the many volunteers the theatre would never have survived and prospered. Now it’s our turn to give back and we want to do it in the best way we can.” says Bruce Beaird.

Friends Of The Ector Theatre Board adds new President: March 2013

The Executive Board Of Directors recently voted to add Bruce Beaird as their new President.

Bruce has been a  supporter of the theatre for many years and has actually performed here for benefit concerts on several occasions. He brings with him his many years of experience in the music, recording, and entertainment industry. The owner of a local recording studio, Trax-N-Tyme Reocrding Studio, he says, “I am extremely proud and honored to be a part of such a wonderful organization. I have watched and tried to learn as much as possible from Don and Toni Stice about the theatre and what they provide for our community. They have and are working hard to provide the highest quality entertainment to the theatre and our community.”

Bruce has over 50 years of experience in the music and entertainment business and hopes his knowledge will benefit not only the Ector Theatre but the community as well. He is currently the founder and president of the board with the West Texas Music Association. The WTMA is an organization that provides real world training for people who are seeking a career in the music industry. His previous experiences include working in studios in Nashville, performing at venues in 37 different states while touring as a musician, being on the board of directors at the local Globe Theatre and successfully operating his local recording studio for the past 13 years.

When asked about the WTMA and the Friends Of The Ector Theatre Bruce replied, “ Many years ago people helped me. Musical mentors and friends gave their time and knowledge and that had such a positive impact on my life. Now that I am older I want to give back what was given to me.  Music is such a powerful influence and can be a very positive thing. Three things that we have always focused on with the WTMA is pride, self esteem, and confidence. Music is the tool we use to accomplish the goal. Working with the board, Don and Toni Stice, will give me the  opportunity to fill the last integral part of what was missing.“

Don and Toni Stice are synonymous with the Ector Theatre. They, along with the board and many volunteers, have worked for over 10 years at the theatre and provided some of the highest quality entertainment in the Permian Basin. It is a daunting task to maintain a theatre of its size but Don and Toni have always accepted the challenge and made the theatre thrive. Their dedication and expertise is unsurpassed. They have provided classic movies and Branson style quality shows for years. “The theatre has always wanted to bring in an educational department for people here in the Permian Basin and bringing Bruce on board will give us the opportunity now.”, said Don Stice.


The Friends Of The Ector Theatre (FOTET) has kicked off their campaign to obtain new lighting for the Performing Arts Department. The original cost was estimated at approximately $7,000.00 but thanks to some generous people that cost is now around half of that. A large donation from CleanItSupply, a PA based retail janitorial supplies business helped significantly. This is in addition to the donations of trash bags, paper towels, and general cleaning supplies from this distributor of custodial products. We are forever grateful. The full list of donors is posted in the lobby.

A few years ago the group New Country raised money for a show they were putting on and some lighting equipment was purchased for the theatre. Their help was great but now with the new Performing Arts Department many new lights and fixtures will be needed to accomplish the new goals.

A few years ago Gary Duesler donated many light fixtures  and recently Carl Vestel donated several more. The theatre now has enough lights to get started, with hopes of adding more later, but many of the lights need bulbs and new wiring.  A design has been submitted for trusses to hang the lights with in the main auditorium. In order to preserve the original look of the theatre and to keep from hindering viewing of movies a retractable truss system will need to be installed. After completion it will be a system that can be built upon to provide a new and exciting look. FOTET is also looking at adding new intelligent lighting to the system to add another dimension to the shows. The campaign features the Buy A Bulb tickets that are to a private viewing of the upcoming 4th of July show, “Our Country…A Tribute to America”. They are asking people to pre-purchase tickets to the show to help them obtain the new lights needed for the performance. Once the new lighting system is purchased and installed they will have it for the new Ector Opry and other shows for years to come.


The Ector Performing Arts department is a new division of the Ector Theatre. It is provided by Friends Of The Ector Theatre (FOTET) and is bringing a new venue and training for persons who are interested in  music and acting. It’s very simple to join and no previous experience is required. There are many aspects to this program and each individual is welcome to participate in as many departments as they like.

All departments are designed with a hands-on approach and classroom training. Membership along with dedication is required. We will be producing 8 to 12 in-house shows per year, monthly Internet TV shows, and performances for various outside venues for local non-profit organizations.

We are currently seeking people who wish to learn about acting, singing, sound engineering, lighting technician, musicians, costume designers, backstage managers, video production, video editing, recording engineer, prop builders, stage hands, music entertainment specialists, web designer, marketing, product manufacturing, and promotional sales.

The Performing Arts department is very extensive in what it can offer you. Experience in the entertainment industry is highly sought after by industry professionals and we can provide you with this experience. We can also provide you with contacts in the music business community to help further your career.

The membership fee is $100.00 per year and once you are a member you will have access to all divisions and departments within the Performing Arts program. It is suggested that you tackle one division at a time and some programs have a prerequisite.

What the Performing Arts Program Offers You

(These programs offer limited experience using the equipment we have available. They are not designed to be the definitive answer to every aspect of its part. They are offered as limited training and experience only. If you wish to obtain a degree you must obtain your education from a school of higher learning. IE: College or Trade School)

Classroom and Teaching Instruction
Basics of Song Writing
Understanding Stage Management
Sound Engineering
Lighting Engineering
Stage & Video Makeup
Understanding Studio Recording
Working with Promoters and Booking Agents
Understanding Self vs Label Promotions

How-To’s of Shooting Portraits and Event Photos
Basic Camera Operations
Studio and Location Lighting Techniques
Location Shooting
Cropping & framing
File Management
Promotional & CD Jacket Photos

Manufacturing Retail Merchandise
Shirts, T-Shirts, Book Bags, Mouse Pads, Koozies, Jackets
Understanding Transfer Types
Using a Heat Press and Screen Printing

(Photography Course is a prerequisite)

Using a professional video camera
Build video commercials
Using Adobe Premier Video Editing Software
Recording Online shows
Preparing videos for uploading
Handling multi-input Audio
Stage set lighting
Using a DMX Lighting System
Using Adobe Photoshop
Building Production sets
Music Video Preparation & Production
Operating camera cranes, dolly’s, & other equipment

CD & DVD Manufacturing
Learning production software
Using CD & DVD reproduction equipment


Printing Department

Designing Promotional Pictures
Designing and printing posters
Making Business cards, class room materials & brochures
Designing CD & DVD Jackets
Shrink wrapping CD & DVD’s
Packaging and shipping materials

Licensing & Contracts Division
(Prerequisite is Classroom and Teaching Instruction)

Obtaining and Managing Copyrights
Publishing Contracts
Mechanical Rights Contracts
Royalty Payments
Video Synchronization Rights
Band Formation Agreements
Venue Contracts
Recording Contracts
Model Release Contracts

Advertisement Department

Understanding selling
Finding and Managing Contacts
Closing the Sale
Product Knowledge and Value
How To Find and Work Live Venues
Handling Ticket Sales
Building and Maintaining Websites

Working In The Music Business
Prerequisite is Classroom and Teaching Instruction &
Licensing and Contracts Division)

Negotiating Contracts
Selling/Pitching Music
Purchasing music rights
Obtaining video synchronization rights
Working with A&R representatives
Understanding band contracts & riders
Working in and with a recording studio
Working with recording labels