Loew's Paradise Theatre

2413 Grand Concourse,
Bronx, NY 10468

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Bopper57
Bopper57 on February 16, 2006 at 2:25 pm

In the fall of 1957 the movie Mister Rock and Roll was showing at the Loew’s Paradise Theater in the Bronx. There was also an Alan Freed stage show which featured Jackie Wilson and JoAnn Campbell. Does anyone remember this show, who was performing and the date? It was not the concert from March 1958.

Thanks

Bopper57

CinemAFuchs
CinemAFuchs on February 9, 2006 at 1:12 pm

Orlando Lopes, New York Metro Director of the Theatre Historical Society of America (THSA), is coordinating a volunteer effort for the Loewâ€\s Paradise. There will be a series of events and shows where help is needed, starting this Saturday, February 11, 2006.

This is a wonderful opportunity to become part of the excitement of this beautifully revived Cinema Treasure. Orlando and the Paradise management have some great plans in store for all movie theatre and film fans.

Please contact Orlando at (631) 225-7071 after 9PM or email him at There will be a name list, so you cannot show up unannounced.

Thank you all.

rabbitlaz
rabbitlaz on January 13, 2006 at 5:32 pm

Correct…It’s Cuba Gooding Sr. Tickets are available online through ticketmaster and at the theatre box office. It’s listed as 70’s Soul Jam.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 13, 2006 at 3:20 pm

Cuba junior is the actor. Cuba senior is the singer (“Everybody Plays the Fool…”).

rabbitlaz
rabbitlaz on January 13, 2006 at 2:14 pm

Although not yet listed on their website, there will be a concert on February 17th featuring The Stylistics, The Dramatics, Cuba Gooding Jr. of The Main Ingrediant, as well as a couple of other acts. I stopped by the theatre this evening and saw the flyer posted in the box office window. Also posted, was a menu for The Paradise Bar and Grill, which I understand is only open on event nights.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on January 10, 2006 at 6:20 pm

It sounds strange, but they might not update the web site regularly. This New Year’s celebration was not there. It wouldn’t surprise me if they succeed in spreading the word through other means.

But, to be fair, the theatre could also be foundering.

rabbitlaz
rabbitlaz on December 25, 2005 at 12:51 pm

I stopped by the theatre yesterday, and noticed that they are having a New Year’s celebration in the theater’s lounge. Two Latin music acts will be performing.

Ziggy
Ziggy on December 22, 2005 at 2:08 am

P.S. Since this may be my last comment this week (you never can tell), please let me wish any readers here a Merry Christmas, a Happy Hannukah, or a joyous holiday. Whichever you may prefer.

Ziggy
Ziggy on December 22, 2005 at 2:06 am

EdSolero did put it nicely, and I agree that the Paradise “restoration” is not above criticism. I was just stating that I’m very sick and tired of people who never find anything positive to say ever. The Paradise was quadruplexed, and then boarded up. Now it’s been fixed up inside and reopened. I was just wishing that people who point out what a horrible job was done on the sign (and I agree, it is a horrible job) could give credit where credit is due, as well as nitpick about what went wrong. There’s a small list of things I don’t like about the Paradise; the non-functioning fountain, the lack of stars and clouds, the refreshment stand, the removal of the trees and vines, and the lack of draperies. But I’m truly thrilled at what has been done right. The balcony soffit was missing masssive chunks of ornamentation that is now replicated and restored. The new paint and gold leaf is amazing. The original light fixtures are up and running, and judging by the photos, the lobby lights are kept appropriately low (as you may know, high levels of lobby lighting are a particular gripe of mine). Well, I could go on, but to repeat and recap, there are a few, a very few, folks who only complain. Of course, they should always feel free to complain, but I should feel free to say that I’m tired of their complaints.

JimRankin
JimRankin on December 22, 2005 at 12:42 am

I compliment EdSolero; he put it so very nicely.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 21, 2005 at 4:02 pm

They paved Paradise, and put up a parking lot…not! Thank God.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 21, 2005 at 7:52 am

No need for noses to get bent out of shape… I think it’s obvious that the most important factor here – overwhelmingly – is not just that the Paradise is still standing, but that the theater has been lovingly and painstakingly restored to its former beauty. Is it the $70 million dollar nook-and-cranny polishing that Radio City Music Hall received a few years back? No… but somehow I’m even more impressed because it doesn’t have that sort of corporate backing.

Still… I think it’s very much in the spirit of this site to use this forum to discuss and debate and, yes, even nit-pick over details. While we celebrate the marvelous work to restore this grand theater and the efforts to keep it going as the great showplace for the people of the Bronx it was intended to be, surely there is room enough for us to point out where we feel the project might have incongruously missed the mark. Perhaps it is precisely because the rest of the restoration has been going along so respectfully and tastefully that some of us were jarred by the sloppy splatter of bright yellow and blue paint on the building’s facade. I think it’s a fair point of criticism. Just as I think it’s fair to criticize the decision to refurbish the 1930’s era art moderne New Amsterdam marquee while rhapsodizing over the otherwise splendid restoration of the theater’s original 1903 Art Nouveau architecture. Or to appreciate the Ziegfeld Theater’s spacious single-screen auditorium while taking exception to its – in my opinion – tacky 1960’s decor.

I know it wasn’t everyone’s intention to run stevebob off this site, and I hope he finds it within himself to come back and continue contributing to the Cinema Treasures mosaic.

stevebob
stevebob on December 20, 2005 at 10:46 am

Patrick, I don’t think I care to make any additional comments, on this topic or any other, so why don’t you just block me completely.

Patrick Crowley
Patrick Crowley on December 20, 2005 at 10:41 am

You’re welcome to comment here, Stevebob, but you must do so in a civil manner.

We’ve removed your last two comments because they violated our terms of use (i.e. off-topic, included personal attacks, and/or obscene).

Please review our terms of use before making any additional comments.

Thanks,
Patrick

stevebob
stevebob on December 20, 2005 at 10:19 am

I think a lot of “contributors” here are frankly full of shit, and just can’t wait to seize upon somebody else’s words to criticize them and take issue with any detail that they don’t agree with.

If the shoe fits … wear it. And if I get banned from this site for keeping it real, so be it.

Mike (saps)
Mike (saps) on December 20, 2005 at 9:03 am

Lets hope they get some bookings now!

JimRankin
JimRankin on December 20, 2005 at 8:58 am

Stevebob is right that there is far too much mediocracy in workmanship today, BUT the others are even more right: the venerable PARADISE is still standing, and it can still be polished and adjusted yet more to go beyond examples of poor workmanship in the years to come as the owners/builders learn from their mistakes. Perhaps the contractor to repair the sign was someone’s relative; nepotism is nothing new to the trades. Maybe it is just that so large and elaborate a sign was entirely new to the local sign shop and they weren’t ready to stick the time, talent and money into doing the job right. We don’t knowl, and probably never will. BUT the fact remains that it can still be redone; paint is easily removed and replaced, and even the entire sign could be rebuilt in bronze if the money for such ever appears. Yes, there are some bad workers that they don’t have to employ again, BUT there are also good workers out there; craftsmen with nothing to be ashamed of. These men can be found and paid the higher fees they will probably demand, but ANY quality of days past CAN be achieved today, IF one is willing to go to the effort to find and pay for such talent.

Heck, signs are the smaller of the worries in trying to find talent in theatre restoration; try to find a place that has the facilities, talent, and integrity to rebuild the original elaborate draperies as they once were. The draperies and their trimmings (passementeries) are virtually a lost art, yet a few recent re-creations show that such can be done if enough money and time is present and one is willing to work with out-of-town artisans. Let us not dispair at the fate of the PARADISE just yet; there are days and years to come when present or future owners may have the funds and patience to persue the perfection we all crave.

mlkaufman
mlkaufman on December 20, 2005 at 8:19 am

Agreed. I grew up in the Paradise, and I can tell you that it looked far worse than this in 1969. Its chief competitor, the RKO Fordham, was demolished. Now THAT’s something to feel bad about.

Ziggy
Ziggy on December 20, 2005 at 7:59 am

I agree with Bobs. It’s amazing that, before the theatre opened, we kept hearing that it will never reopen. Now that’s it’s been largely restored and reopened all we hear is that it will never stay open. Then the nitpicking starts about what’s wrong. Yeah, the sign looks like crap, and you know what? A fresh coat of paint will fix it. I went to the holiday show at the old Loew’s State in Syracuse. The heat was too low. The lighting levels in the lobby are too high. The new refreshment stand is obtrusive, but you know what I kept telling myself? IT’S STILL STANDING. Someone cares enough about it to keep it standing and open, and that’s a great start. As far as I’m concerned, the Paradise is off to a great start. I hope it’s a huge success. Maybe someday they can do a proper restoration of the sign, and then all you whiners can find something else to complain about.

RJS
RJS on December 20, 2005 at 7:47 am

I have to confess, really don’t understand all this concern over a sign and what color it’s painted. I’ve passed this building and from the outside it looks fantastic, and best of all, it’s still standing and it’s reopened! What color do you all want it to be? A slightly different shade of blue or yellow? If it means that much to you, talk to the owner and maybe they’ll let you repaint it.
Perhaps it’s just me, but coming from an area where any building like this was torn down years ago, I’m just happy to know it’s still standing. Judging from the photo’s posted earlier, whoever re-opened this treasure deserves tremendous credit for the amount of work done to restore this building.
I can’t believe someone who loves theaters actually wrote “an enshrinement of mediocrity and incompetence” to describe the workmanship on a sign. For God’s sake, it’s a sign! Did you see the lobby to this place?! They even have the original chandeliers working!
Let’s keep our priorities straight.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 20, 2005 at 4:33 am

Well written, stevebob. I couldn’t agree more.

stevebob
stevebob on December 20, 2005 at 4:19 am

It would be tempting to excuse that wretched sign as a “Bronx thing”, as though patrons there wouldn’t be discerning enough to know or care or don’t deserve better. The truth, though, is that there’s a woeful lack of standards of good workmanship in New York City generally. I wonder if it’s the same in the rest of the country (or the world), or if it reflects the skills possessed (not!) by NYC’s current immigrant population compared to that of the past.

Let me be clear that I am NOT referring to rarefied projects where cost is no object. The superrich have access to quality materials and contractors who employ craftsmen who know what they are doing, just as they always have had. They have standards, and their standards are enforced. For regular folks, though, it’s a world of band-aid repairs and appallingly sloppy work. Your typical New York City apartment building handyman cannot paint a straight line and would paint right over electrical outlets rather than remove switchplate covers. To do otherwise is simply not in his ken.

When we recognize the splendid monuments of the past, we tend to acknowledge that the materials and workmanship of that era can’t be easily duplicated. You couldn’t ask for a more vivid example than that sign! For as much work as was apparently put into polishing the inside of the Paradise, that sign couldn’t even be reproduced with sunbeams that are symmetrical and spaced evenly.

As long as people don’t care or don’t notice or make excuses, these are the standards that will prevail. Not too many posters have taken issue with that ghastly sign; as one previous poster pleaded, “GIVE THEM A CHANCE.” It’s basically an enshrinement of mediocrity and incompetence, and it shouldn’t be acceptable â€" even in the Bronx. I’m hopeful that the Landmarks Commission will compel a re-redesign.

IanJudge
IanJudge on December 19, 2005 at 7:00 pm

Looking at the photos, um, they spelled Loew’s as Lowes on the ticket… either they are being sponsored by a hardware chain or someone there is not on the ball.

Comparing the old photos of the sunburst sign and the new photos, I would guess that it is tin, that the outlines of the original sunburst were visible even on a fuzzy photo from a couple of years ago, and that the new paint job extends the paint down an extra foot or two beyond where it originally went, nevermind being sloppy and amateurish. Granted, they may not have a ton of money to spend, but this is exterior paint here, folks. It shouldn’t cost that much to pay someone a day or two pay to do it right.

I wish them nothing but success, but with no events lined up, how do they expect to pay the rent? The heating and electric bill on that place has got to be around 2k a month, at least, even while closed.

mlkaufman
mlkaufman on December 19, 2005 at 4:28 pm

An article on the Paradise reopening, with some pictures, including some of the exterior lit up at night, may be found here:

http://www.backinthebronx.com/paradise.html

The exterior “sunburst” looks much better with the illuminated theatre name, BTW.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 15, 2005 at 7:31 am

Here’s a link to the Paradise’s cinematour page which features an array of photos taken while renovations were still in progress back in August 2004. Please forgive if this is a duplicate of an earlier post, but there are so many comments to sift through on this page I thought it’d be useful to take a look at them now that the theater is open again:

http://www.cinematour.com/tour.php?db=us&id=16520