By Heidi Glaus
St. Louis (KSDK) - It has been described as timeless perfection, magnificent and beautifully ornate, but in 1981 on a cold January day it was described very differently.
"It was one light, it smelled, there were bats flying in and out and birds," explained Mary Strauss with Fox Associates.
Despite the winged creatures and underneath the dirt Mary and Leon Strauss saw something beautiful.
"There were real craftsmen back then," Strauss said.
Back then was 1927 when construction of the Fox Theatre began and when Fox Associates decided to save it, they decided to restore it to its original glory.
"If I ever get a chance to just stop and think for a minute, it's like wow," Strauss went on to say.
It was a one year, $2 million plus project.
"There were a lot of headaches," Strauss added.
Original colors were duplicated, seats were removed and re-done and 7,300 yards of elephant carpet matching the original pattern were woven.
"It's unique," Strauss said referring to the carpet.
But when the scaffolding came down and St. Louisans walked in, those headaches were a distant memory.
"Leon and I were in the lobby that first week and it was just wonderful to see people going like this. And this old guy walks in and says big deal, big deal it looks like it always has, I said we're a success," Strauss said.
Since then more than 16 million people have walked through the doors.
"We've had I think 1,565 different acts and productions here," Strauss pointed out.
A walk through Peacock alley will actually remind you of every single show. Of course, as you walk down that hallway realize there are many more shows to come and countless memories to be made at a theater that is truly more than fabulous.