I have some of my fondest memories at the 104-year-old Brady Theater in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Everything from seeing STOMP! and the Beatles Tribute band with my family when I was a child, to experiencing the exhilarating sounds and fantastic performances from bands such as Vampire Weekend, Death Cab for Cutie, Cold War Kids, the Naked and Famous, Metric, Weezer and so much more in my high school years to early-20’s. Most notably, my husband proposed to me inside this haunted structure on April 13, 2012 (on my 21st birthday) during the Avett Brothers concert while they played their song “January Wedding.” Not only does this location hold a history for me personally, but it also is woven deep into Tulsa’s history and tells the history of the spirits that haunt it.
The Old Lady on Brady, (also known as the Tulsa Convention Hall and the Tulsa Municipal Theater in its past) was built in 1914 and remodeled in 1930 and 1952. You can tell its age by the small wooden seats still being used in the theater today!
This building stood during Tulsa’s darkest time in history. Because of the theater’s proximity to the Greenwood district, the location was used as a detention and infirmary facility in 1921 during the Tulsa Race Riot. This tragic event resulted in many lives lost and is known as one of the most violent race riots in U.S. history. It helps to shed light on the reasons behind the eerie sensations and paranormal reports from this location by understanding the turmoil that these walls have seen.
The most notable haunting at the Brady Theater is that of Enrico Caruso, famous tenor opera singer who performed at the theater in 1920. It is believed that Caruso caught a cold during his visit to Tulsa that led to him dying of Pleurisy in 1921 (the singer reportedly had to walk at least a mile in the rain to reach the venue to perform that night which is a plausible cause for catching a cold).
The Paranormal Investigation Team of Tulsa did a full investigation of the building 16 years ago, however it is said that some of the same experiences and sensations that were reported then, are still felt today. Visit this site here to see photos, hear audio recordings and read more on that investigation.
Some of the unexplained happenings that have been reported by workers and security guards at the Brady Theater include:
- Strange sounds and uncomfortable feelings
- Lights turning on and off by themselves
- Unexplained equipment failures during/prior to concerts and events
There are some references to a stage hand that hung himself at the Brady Theater some time ago, but there is little information out there to support that claim. Additionally, there is also a mention of a worked who died at the location who fell from a ladder, but again, there is not a lot of details that support these stories.
In 1979, the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The architectural design at the time was referred to as Western Classic Revival.
This enduring structure has been witness to Tulsa’s history – both the bad and the good. It’s no wonder that a building that has experienced so much in its long lifetime would be the ideal home to haunt.
Lots of the information gathered for this post is thanks to Frankie Lee who blogs at the Cryptic File. Be sure to visit to read more about this haunting.