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Bronzeville Planned Development for Arts & Entertainment: The Lillian Marcie Center

Updated: Dec 12, 2022

The September SSBA meeting was presented by Keith Giles, an award-winning real estate developer, who spoke about his proposed development of the Lillian Marcie Center for the Performing Arts. The Center’s Mission is to restore and secure the artistic legacy of the Bronzeville community. The property is located at 4343 S. Cottage Grove Avenue in the heart of the neighborhood; the twin sister of the Lakeview neighborhood Briar Street Theater. Keith partnered with Harry Lennix, a Bronzeville native, who is known for his acting career that includes roles in The Matrix and The Black List. The building will be anchored by the African American Museum of Performing Arts. They will host dance, theater, and live music.

"This space will be a venue where black artistic expression will flourish" -Aaron Giles

Aaron Giles, son of Keith Giles, leads this development as Project Manager. His background in concert and theater promoting as well as real estate are the perfect match for his motivation and said "The Center is a special project with an impactful outcome".

The Center was originally built as a two story 22,500 square foot Marshall Field warehouse in 1915. The Center will hold approximately 350 seats in a multilevel auditorium and also will have a more intimate space for smaller performances that will hold up to 100 seats. The project is partly financed through the State via the Build Illinois Bond Fund. The Center hopes with other revitalization efforts along the 43rd Street Corridor they will be able to transform the area into a cultural destination.

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