Showing 35,151 - 35,175 of 35,178 comments found
Warren….I’ve been thinking along the same line as you. I was thinking this theater started out with vaudeville acts and then switched to showing movies. That sure would explain the small seating capacity.
Peter…..I’m going to have someone else try and scan that picture on a different scanner. If it comes out better than the one that I have, maybe I’ll upload that one to this site.
I try not to write personal things on a public site like this, but I think you and I know alot of the same people. If your the Peter that I’m thinking of, you graduated high school with my sister. I won’t mention names but I believe your old high school is having an open house this Sept. If you would like to see this photo, I will email it to you. If you don’t want to post your email address, but would like the photo, I can get your address from a mutual friend. I hope your not too confused, I’m not paranoid, I’m just cautious what I write here.
Peter….Thats a good idea, I might give that a try. I’ve been getting alot of emails about this theater. Most are just memories of it but one of them actually remembers going to see movies there. I’m trying to get more specific answers from this woman and when I do, I’ll post them here.
I have a younger sister who has a very large collection of old photos. When I told her that I was researching the Majestic, she went through those photos. She found one of her taken on Seneca ave near the corner of Greene ave. Behind her is the movie theater. The picture is dated 1958. Its old and probably taken with a Kodak Brownie camera. If you use a magnifier, you can read the marquee. It says “MAJESTIC”.
She tried scanning this picture. When you do that you can no longer read the marquee. I have a copy of it on my computer now in .bmp format. There is no longer any doubt that this was the Majestic theater.
What I’m trying to find out now is, when did it open. When did it close. What kind of movies did they play there. If possible, I’d like to know who owned it. I might never find the answers to these questions but I will give it my best shot.
Hi Bway….I took your advice and moved that message here. That building is still a funeral home. From what I understand that it has a different name now. I believe its called the D'Angelo Funeral Home Inc.
In a message on the RKO Madison board, Warren said he looked up the Majestic in the 1931 Film Daily Year Book and it lists a seating capacity of 600. That sounds like a realistic figure to me since it was a small theater. That book also lists the address as 424 Seneca ave which is incorrect. Whoever did the research for that book must have made a mistake.
If your wondering how I can be so sure that there was a movie theater on the corner of Seneca ave and Greene ave, I’ll explain it to you. I grew up there. The theater was closed at the time, but it was still there. I walked past it just about everyday. The side of the building was on Greene ave. I played handball against that wall. I also played stickball on Greene ave. Home plate was even with the back of the theater. I hit the ball north towards Seneca ave. I also hit many balls onto the roof of that theater.
The marquee in the front had a drain pipe running down from it along the front of the building to drain off the rain water. As a kid, I climbed up that pipe to get on top of the marquee. Yes, I was very daring in my youth.
The building had a rear door which was sealed tight. It also had a side door on Greene ave that was locked until someone “opened” it. Although I never saw a movie playing in this theater, I was inside this theater many times. My friends and I explored this building looking for a way to gain access to the roof to retrieve the many balls we had hit up there. After all, a Spalding was around 25 cents back then and none of us were rich. One day we discovered that in the booth where the projection machine used to be was an opening in the ceiling that led to the roof. You can imagine how happy we were to discover that.
Anyway, I don’t have a vivid memory of the interior because it was dark inside when I was in there. The seats were still there, but not much else was intact. Over the years that it stood vacant someone pretty much cleaned this building out. Indeed there was a theater at that location. Is it the Majestic? I’ve heard from enough people that also believe it is the Majestic theater and unless someone has proof that this theater has a different name, I’ll continue to call it the Majestic.
The Majestic has a place where you can post messages so we can move this conversation there.
Peter…..I remember Ciro’s restaurant very well. One block west of there was my favorite hangout, the Ridgewood Grove Poolroom. Also in the middle of that block was a barbershop that I went to for haircuts. I’m not sure of the barbers name. It could have been Tony. Before I get into more trouble for posting non-theater related messages, I don’t think I ever saw the Imperial theater on Dekalb ave. Is that theater listed on this site? I’ll have to check it out.
Warren….The first funeral home that replaced this theater was called Seneca Chapels and that opened 42 years ago. I have no idea how many times the funeral home has changed hands or names. There was nothing very distinctive about that building to begin with. It was just a red brick building with a marquee in front. Other than changing the entry doors and applying a coat of paint on the bricks, the outside looks the same as it did before. It would be great if there was a place on the web to search real estate records for Queens, but I don’t think such a site exists.
Warren…I think that someone already stated that 424 Seneca Ave would be near Stanhope St. To the best of my knowledge, there was never a movie theater at that location. I believe that book is in error and the Majestic was indeed located at 494 Seneca Ave.
Peter….I’m glad that you enjoyed that article. Someone emailed me that link when I was trying to get info on the Majestic. I wish the person that wrote that article had given an email address or a way to contact him. I would like to find out what he remembers about the Majestic.
There is still a funeral home located at 494 Seneca ave. I believe the name of it now is D'Angelo Funeral Home Inc.
Check this website……http://timesnewsweekly.com/Archives2004/Apr.-Jun.2004/051304/NewFiles/OURNEIGH.html
(You might have to copy and paste it.)
It seems like someone else recalls the Majestic theater being on Seneca and Greene. Read the bottom of the first paragraph. Why didn’t I find that sooner!
Bway….Thanks for your help. I entered the Majestic. I hope that I didn’t mess it up. How long does it take before you can go there and post messages?
Okay guys, I emailed everyone I know that grew up in Ridgewood. Some of those people have no clue, but three of them wrote back and said it was called the Majestic. I’ll go along with that. It does sound familiar. Maybe one of you could enter it in the listing since I have no idea how to do that. I would still like more info on this theater if anyone has anything to add please do. Thanks for everyones help with this.
I did a search on the web and I found a Majestic theater that used to be on Fulton st in Brooklyn. All it says is, it opened for business in 1904. Would there be two theaters listed for Brooklyn with the same name? The more I read, the more confused I get.
Bway, I do not remember a theater on Seneca and Stanhope so it must be a typo like you said. Also, no matter where they may set the boundry line, Seneca ave is in Queens and not Brooklyn. Someone else also told me that it was the Grandview but that name doesn’t ring a bell. It looks like this theater is not listed on this website and if we can confirm the name, we can add it to the sites listing.
Disregard that last message, it seems to have posted twice. The Majestic sounds very familiar. I’m very familiar with that area and the address can’t be 424. 494 would be more like it. Is the Majestic theater listed on this site? I’m curious as to when it opened and when it closed down. Thanks Peter and Bway for your help.
Peter, I’m familiar with all of the theaters that you mentioned. This one was located on Seneca Ave and Greene Ave. The address would be 494 Seneca Ave. This theater was closed in the mid fifties and might have closed before that. Around 1962 the building was sold and it became a funeral home called Seneca Chapels. I grew up looking at this building and even played under the marquee when it rained. The name of it is buried somewhere in my brain but it just won’t come out right now.
Peter, I’m familiar with all of the theaters that you mentioned. This theater was located on Seneca ave and Greene ave. To be precise, the address would have been 494 Seneca ave. I know that it was closed by the mid fifties, maybe even sooner. Around 1962 the building was sold and it became a funeral home called Seneca Chapels. I grew up looking at this building everyday. The name of this theater is in my brain somewhere but it just won’t come out right now.
Thanks Peter. I knew House of Wax was either 1953 or 1954. Sometimes the old memory works great, sometimes I can’t remember the password to get my email.
You might be correct Warren, it could have opened at the Ridgewood and not the Madison. The years will sometimes play tricks on your memory. This movie also had a gimmick to it. No one was supposed to be seated after the movie started. There were guards to enforce this rule. I think that only happened for the first day. Psycho was one of those movies that you had to see more than once to fully understand it.
The first time I saw this movie, the two scenes that scared me were the shower scene and the scene where the detective walks up the stairs and Norman appears with the knife. Psycho was loosely based on a true story. The book was written by Robert Bloch and he based it on a real serial killer in Wisconsin named Edward Gein. If you want to read more about this, go to this website http://www.crimelibrary.com/gein/geinmain.htm
I have a question that isn’t related to the Madison. There was another theater in Ridgewood that is no longer around. I don’t remember the name of it, I just remember where it was located. I’m trying to find what the name of it was. Is there a way to search for a theater by address or street? Thanks.
Hi Peter…..I lived in Ridgewood from 1948 to 1977 give or take a few months. I think the release date on the House of Wax was around 1953 or 1954. It was the first big studio 3D movie. Does anyone remember the character in the movie called Igor? He was played by Charles Bronson. A bit of trivia for you younger folks. The original credits for the House of Wax movie lists Igor as being played by Charles Buchinsky who is actually Charles Bronson.
Another horror movie that played at the RKO Madison was Psycho. I don’t know how I could have forgotten that one in my other post. That was one of the few movies that I’ve seen that actually scared me.
My memories of the RKO Madison go back to the fifties. I remember in the late fifties they showed alot of Vincent Price movies around Halloween. They always had a “gimmick” with the movie. One movie was called The Tingler and they would place some kind of vibrator under the seats to scare you. There was another “gimmick” movie that played there called The House on Haunted Hill. This time there was a small coffin on each side of the screen with an “invisible” wire coming out of it and at a certain point in the movie, the coffin would open and a “ghost” would fly down the wire to the back of the theater. Another Vincent Price movie I saw there was House of Wax in 3D.
In the sixties I remember the Dave Clark Five appearing in person to promote their movie. I think the title was Catch Us If You Can. The year was 1965. That same year I saw the movie Harlow there too. I remember that movie because two Harlow movies were released at the same time. One starring Carrol Baker and the other starring Carol Lynley. I believe the Carrol Baker version played at the Madison. I also saw The Green Berets starring John Wayne and David Jannsen.
I saw alot of movies at the RKO Madison but those seem to stick out in my memory the most. Thanks for reading this.
Sorry for posting non-theatrical messages. I don’t know of any message board that deals with just Ridgewood, but if anyone has some experience at these things, I found a place where you can start your own message board for FREE. Go here for more info……http://www.voy.com/
Once again, I’m sorry for breaking this boards rules.
Speaking of clothes, do you remember Robert Hall on Dekalb ave? I used to go to Jahn’s also. Wasn’t that on Hillside ave? I think it was the last stop or the first stop (depending on the direction you were going) on the Myrtle ave bus. I got on that bus at Palmetto st and Wyckoff ave (underneath the el train) and that was the first or last stop also.
So, your the one that was making all the noise at the Dave Clark 5 movie. I think they were at the Madison theater in the summer of ‘65. I knew that Fr. McCabe left the church, but I didn’t know that he passed away. I liked him alot, I’m sorry to hear that he’s gone.
I remember the Hart bowling alley. I also remember a post office being near the bowling alley. There was also a luncheonette on the corner of Dekalb and Wyckoff that made decent hamburgers in the 60’s. I didn’t shop much on Knickerbocker ave because Myrtle ave was closer and had more stores. I do remember a store that I went to on Knickerbocker ave that was called King Soloman or something like that. Do you remember that one?
Ellen…..Those names don’t sound familiar, although there was a bar on Greene and Onderdonk that I went to a few times back then. What a difference a decade makes huh. Sometimes I feel like I’m 90 also, but I still get days where I feel like 15 again. BTW….that guy Pete, his name was Campos.