• July 25, 2008

    State Theate expansion may begin soon

    CULPEPER, VA — After being announced almost two years ago, the expansion plans for the State Theatre might finally come to fruition. Following that, it would become a mixed-use entertainment venue.

    In the planning, design and fundraising phases for several years, rehab of the 70-year-old movie house on Main Street is about to get physical.

    The State Theatre Foundation comes before the Town Architectural Review Board today for approval to begin the estimated $10 million rehab.

    “We are getting very close,” said Chris Hamilton, chairman of the foundation’s building committee. “We are actually in negotiations with our contractor and when that is complete it won’t be long” before construction begins, he said.

    Read the full story in the Culpeper Star-Exponent.

  • July 23, 2008

    Work continues on Magic City

    MURDO, SD — Following the initial report, a local youth group continues to work on restoring the Magic City Theater.

    Walking into the gloomy, hollow shell of the Magic City Theater, it is hard to imagine a big screen and rows of theater seats filled with movie fans contentedly munching popcorn.

    “It’s hard to visualize,” said Carson Moore, 16, admitting that the transformation won’t happen overnight.

    Carson is a member of a group of local teens and adults for whom that vision is alive. Every time they roll up their shirt sleeves to tackle another project in the theater, they inch closer to their goal of restoring something the town lost when the theater closed decades ago.

    Read the full story in the Rapid City Journal.

  • July 16, 2008

    Former Harper Woods movie theater gets new life

    HARPER WOODS, MI — The Wayne County Community College is renovating the Beacon East Cinemas for student use.

    Workers are turning the former Beacon East Cinemas in Harper Woods into a center of learning.

    The Detroit News reports Monday that Wayne County Community College is turning the shuttered 1970s movie theater into University Square. The facility will be shared with four-year schools that want to offer courses locally.

    The full story is in the Associated Press.

  • July 14, 2008

    Owosso finally receives $1 million grant

    OWOSSO, MI — After nearly a year of waiting, the city of Owosso finally received its $1 million grant from the Michigan State Housing Authority’s Vibrant Small Cities Initiative. Part of this grant will be used to rebuild the Lebowsky Center’s theater walls facing Main and Park Streets which had to be partially demolished after the fire which gutted the theater.

    The Owosso Community Players still plan on having the theater completely enclosed again by the end of the year.

    More details at The Argus-Press.

  • July 8, 2008

    AAA Magazine article focuses on Midwest theaters

    The AAA “Traveler” magazine for July/August 2008 features a retrospective of several Midwestern theaters and the efforts to preserve them especially as performing arts centers. The story includes several pictures and focuses especially on the Fox in St. Louis, MO, the Missouri in Columbia, MO, the Illinois in Centralia, IL, the Granada in Emporia, KS, and the Victory in Evansville, IN. A number of other theaters are briefly mentioned as well.

    The full article can be read at Our AAA (after typing in a local zip code like 63101).

  • July 7, 2008

    On Line LIVE Theatre Renovation website

    For those who are interested in theater renovation, the following link will provide a continuous view of the Count Basie Theatre auditorium during the renovation process. Hope you enjoy the unique experience.

  • June 27, 2008

    Rialto to be refurbished

    LOS ANGELES, CA — A theater many thought was past the point of no return is set to open up again. The Rialto Theatre in downtown Los Angeles is getting some major investment so it can eventually reopen as a live music venue with a restaurant.

    Following the fates of many historic properties affected by the ongoing Bringing Back Broadway initiative, the currently defunct Rialto Theater has found a suitor to boost its low profile on the strip.

    (Thanks to teamperks for providing the photo.)

    According to an announcement made yesterday, Hollywood-based Longest Marquee LLC has signed a 25-year lease on the structure with plans to spend $6 million on renovations to reopen it as a restaurant/bar/live music venue.

    Read more at angelenic.

  • Lynchburg theatre to be brought back

    LYNCHBURG, VA — As it approcahes its 80th birthday, the Academy of Music, is on the slate to be ambitiously renovated with some new additions.

    Lynchburg’s Academy of Music closed in 1958, with more than a century of history locked up inside. But Thursday morning that all changed. A ground breaking will turn the lights back on at Lynchburg’s historic theater. For the city, it means looking to the future.

    “As far as I’m concerned, this is our Civic Center. Between this and the hotel across the street and other lodging opportunities in and around downtown, this is where a lot of different events can take place,” said City Manager Kimball Payne.

    People lined up for tours, to take a peak inside, where famous vaudeville performers once took the stage.

    Get the full story at WSLS.

  • June 20, 2008

    Tucson indy cinemas

    TUCSON, AZ — Instead of focusing on the typical multiplexes, an article highlights the alternative cinema choices in Tucson like the Loft Cinema and Fox Theatre.

    If you’re looking for a way to fight the punishing temperatures that inevitably strike Tucson whenever the summer months roll around, there’s no better way than the movie theater, that well-known darling of the air conditioning industry and foe of advocates for comfortable seating.

    The summer’s blockbusters, as usual, aren’t too promising. Fortunately, Tucson is blessed with a flurry of alternative movie choices, and they haven’t let us down this summer.

    Read the full story in the Arizona Daily Wildcat.

    (Thanks to housechick for providing the photo.)

  • King Cat revitalized

    SEATTLE, WA — The King Cat Theatre that has had many uses over the years is being brought back again as a venue for a variety of activities.

    Now, the old theater is revived — but the King Cat in 2008 is encompassing a lot of its past variety, too. As an all-purpose venue, it’s fit for business meetings, concerts, film festivals and also available for rent.

    “I want it to be a place to gather for all sorts of entertainment for Seattle,” said new owner Arif Amaani. “Everybody will have something to see.”

    Read the full story in the Seattle Times.