Riviera Theatre

31-33 Chenango Street,
Binghamton, NY 13901

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generalenigma on October 16, 2009 at 6:36 pm

I am planning on attending this presentation on Weds Oct 21st, too. Anyone who has contributed here and also attends, please take a moment to introduce yourself & say “Hi”. I will be wearing a “Binghamton Classic Films” name tag. Jim Macumber

rluther on October 16, 2009 at 3:43 pm

For those in the Binghamton area there will be a presentation on the Riviera (formerly Stone Opera House) at the Broome County Public Library on October 21 at 6:30pm. The presentation will cover some history of the building, plenty of recent interior photos will be shown, and there will be an update on recent repair and reuse developments. Hope to see you there.


Patsy on August 1, 2009 at 10:19 pm

Lost: In the 1975 photo you posted it shows a couple of storefronts with Vitrolite facades.

Patsy on August 1, 2009 at 10:16 pm

Jim: Yes, this is wonderful news..thanks for the article.

generalenigma on August 1, 2009 at 2:06 pm

I have FANTABULOUS NEWS for anyone who has been lamenting (as I had) the almost certain “destruction by neglect” of the Old Stone Opera House & Riviera Theatre. In Sunday July 26th’s Press & Sun-Bulletin there was a LARGE article about the owner committing himself to saving this historic building. Many kudos to him & his efforts & I pray for eventual success. You can see the online version of the article here: View link
Jim Macumber

Patsy on May 30, 2009 at 11:24 am

jeffreyt: Interesting post..let us know what you find out and can photograph.

jeffreyt on May 30, 2009 at 11:18 am

I live 20 miles from Binghamton and am very familiar with these theatres. The reason for the combined marquee is the Comerford chain which owned these and all the local theatres, basically wanted to save money and build one marquee.

By the way, I have tried to contact the owner through the real estate broker and have had no luck (not even a call back) as I would like to tour both theatres and take photos.

Patsy on May 13, 2009 at 7:48 am

Lost: My thought, as well.

Patsy on May 12, 2009 at 5:54 pm

And sure would love to see some interior photos then and now!

Patsy on May 12, 2009 at 5:54 pm

I hope the City of Binghamton has started to restore this unique theatre!

Patsy on May 12, 2009 at 5:52 pm

Those are interesting photos with a share marquee…never seen that before though it may exist elsewhere.

adamghost on April 11, 2009 at 12:22 pm

The theatre did NOT close in 1973, contrary to all reports on the ‘net. It closed in 1978. I myself attended movies there in '78 and '76 (my entire class went there for a bicentennial showing of the previously-released film “1976.”) and remember it closing. It was a magnificent theatre, already well in decline but something to behold.

generalenigma on February 21, 2009 at 3:08 am

Just as a little aside … It is almost completely inconcievable that at 15 years old on Weds August 12th 1964 I attended the PREMIERE of The Beatles' A HARD DAYS NIGHT in this gorgeous Riviera Theatre !!!! ….and NOW, 45 years later, it’s glory has been completely annihilated by the passage of time & utter total neglect. OW-WICH !!!!! Jim Macumber

generalenigma on February 21, 2009 at 2:55 am

Mike R. clued me in (Thanks Mike !!! I THINK !!!!) to this site to see a large set of just taken photos of the interior of the Old Stone Opera House/Riviera Theatre. If anyone would like to take a gander here is the site info … though be WARNED the photos are very painful to look at & I cannot see any hope at all for the theatre to ever be able to be restored. It is a tragedy & a travesty!!! First go to the NYS Landmarks website at http://www.nyslandmarks.com/ Then click on “Treasures of the Tier” under the search bar on the upper right and then click on the article “January 11, 2009 Stone Opera House… Historic Theater faces Demolition by Neglect” … after reading the article you can go into the set of 24 photos by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page “Click Here for Interior Photos: nysLandmarks.com/stone” Jim Macumber

Patsy on June 20, 2008 at 11:03 am

I hope to visit Binghamton in August and see what is going on in that town, theatre-wise.

Patsy on May 9, 2008 at 11:09 am

MikeR: When the owner of any property is an absentee owner that is a major stumbling block!

deleted user
[Deleted] on May 9, 2008 at 10:27 am

I wish I had more information to relay to you. Both this theater and the Strand next door are, from what I understand, in terrible shape and are crying out for restoration. The owner of these properties does not live in this area, so it’s hard to get more details.

Patsy on May 8, 2008 at 9:51 am

MikeR: Thanks for this update on this theatre in Binghamton. I could find myself in that part of NYS this summer. If so, I’ll check it all out. Before I make a theatre trip somewhere I usually try to make contact with someone who can be my tour guide, etc.

deleted user
[Deleted] on May 8, 2008 at 6:04 am

I recently heard the mayor say that attempts are being made to secure the roof. If that is actually accomplished, there might be a little hope still left for this structure. It would be shame for both the Riviera and the neighboring Strand to be lost permanently. They were very popular downtown attractions at one time.

generalenigma on April 2, 2008 at 5:52 pm

I have sad news to report … if you will take a look at today’s Binghamton paper with the following link, you will see that Stone Opera House/Riviera Theatre building has deteriorated to the point that it is beginning to crumble. No way of knowing whether it CAN or WILL be saved.
View link
Jim Macumber

Patsy on October 30, 2005 at 5:24 am

“In 1987 there were plans put forward to convert the theatre into two 300 seat theatres within the building.” I wonder whatever happened to those plans though I wouldn’t have been in favor of converting the theatre into two 300 seat theatres!

Patsy on October 30, 2005 at 5:21 am

Still hoping to see some photos of this theatre former opera house that opened in the late 1800’s with Romansque Revival decor!

Patsy on September 15, 2005 at 8:56 am

Does anyone have photos of this theatre and ‘unused auditorium"?

joemasher on May 17, 2005 at 1:23 pm

The auditorium is still walled off from the rest of the building. About 10 years ago I saw the back door open and went in. The theatre is in a dilapidated state, but could easily have been restored. Storefronts are fully occupied, and the theatre itself is next door to the former Strand Theatre. The Strand’s lobby functions as a restaurant, with the kitchen ‘under the balcony’. There’s a door off of the kitchen leading into the unused auditorium.
When both theatres were open, they shared one long trapezoid-shaped marquee which was attached to both buildings.