Broadway Theatre

1681 Broadway,
New York, NY 10019

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Showing 26 - 50 of 55 comments

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on February 18, 2010 at 3:53 pm

I’m with AGR on this. In 1996 a Dayton, Ohio theater installed Cinerama for what was supposed to be a two-week run. It wound up running for more than three years (weekends only). I realize NYC has more tourist attractions than Dayton, but still … :) And Cinerama still draws crowds in LA whenever it is shown there.

AGRoura on February 18, 2010 at 2:05 pm

It’s a shame NYC does not have a Cinerama theater like LA and Seattle. It would be a big tourism attraction.

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on February 18, 2010 at 12:52 pm

A few more details on CINERAMA at the Broadway.

This, of course, was a 3-strip CINERAMA location.

It had a 146 degree LOUVERED, 78 ft by 26 ft, screen!

The first CINERAMA movie, THIS IS CINERAMA, had it’s World Premiere at the Broadway on Tuesday, September 30, 1952. It ran for 35 weeks, till Thursday, June, 4 1953!

THIS IS CINERAMA then transfered to the Warner Theater, on Friday, June 5, 1953 and ran for another 88 weeks!

This means THIS IS CINERAMA had a 123 week run (THAT’S ALMOST 2 YEARS AND 5 MONTHS!), the longest running movie engagement in the history on New York City!

“Ladies and Gentlemen, THIS IS CINERAMA!” Lowell Thomas, September 30, 1952

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on February 14, 2010 at 2:21 am

Skinner Organ Company of Boston, Massachusetts installed a pipe organ in the Broadway/Colony Theater in 1924. It was Opus 485, a 4 Manual/32 Rank with 2,153 pipes. I know it was played by George Brock in 1927 and that’s the last thing I can find out about the organ. Anyone know what happened to this organ after that?

squirestone on September 8, 2009 at 5:51 am

Oops, forgot to mention a date: c 1926

squirestone on September 8, 2009 at 5:50 am

My grandmother “performed” as a lingerie model/dancer? in a/the Parisian Lingerie Revue. The first production was presented before the movie “Devil’s Island” with Pauline Frederick, and the second edition of the revue played before a production of “Oh Baby”, a play with Graham McNamee, a few weeks later. I’m writing about her experiences on Broadway and am looking for more info on this time period and these particular performances. If anyone’s interested, I can post playbill and ads for these shows.

ERD on March 31, 2009 at 3:49 am

Plenty of showmanship and style in that program. Makes you want to attend that theatre. I appreciate S. Porridge letting us see it.

sporridge on November 7, 2008 at 3:55 am

Link to a 1927 program from the Colony:

View link

Visited the Broadway in 2003 to see Baz Luhrmann’s “La Boheme” — thanks to all for filling in the history and various aliases.

edblank on May 28, 2008 at 2:30 pm

Thanks, Warren. Never saw that marquee before. I love the old ones, with the individually-placed letters. I was always intrigued when moviehouses outside New York used the names of actors who weren’t necessarily the top-billed ones, violating the contractual billing, so to speak, to favor a hometown actor, a singer who was at a local nightclub, etc.
But I did like the Broadway Theatre’s script-like marquee from the 1980s and 1990s.

edblank on May 28, 2008 at 2:37 am

As a Broadway theater during the past few decades, the Broadway had one of the best marquees in Manhattan. No more. Does the city prevent theaters from maintaining old-style marquees or is the theater owners who keep shrinking them or replacing them with nondescipt new marquees?

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 17, 2008 at 4:30 pm

Nana Mouskouri 1977

You forgot Nana Mouskouri in 1977 or credit to IBDB.COM.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on February 16, 2008 at 9:43 pm

The Broadway/Colony showcased Vaudeville in the thirties and has presented some non-play stage shows since, such as Robin William and Elvis Costello performing live.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 15, 2006 at 1:33 pm

The photos I posted in January are now located in this Broadway Theater album, now that I’ve reorganized my photobucket album.

William on April 21, 2006 at 1:39 pm

here is the theatre’s name timeline.
The B.S. Moss’s Colony Theatre opened on Dec. 25th, 1924.
Universal’s Colony Theatre reopened Feb. 7th, 1926, Film.
B.S. Moss’s Broadway Theatre reopened Dec. 8th, 1930, Film.
Earl Carroll’s Broadway Theatre reopened Sept. 27th, 1932, Legit.
Broadway Theatre reopened Dec. 26th, 1932, Vaudeville house.
B.S. Moss’s Broadway Theatre reopened Oct. 12th, 1935, Film.
Cine Roma 1937, Film.
Broadway Theatre 1939, Film

The B.S. Moss stands for Benjamin S. Moss, who was a theatre owner and operator. The Shubert’s bought the house in 1939.

William on April 21, 2006 at 1:12 pm

The Broadway Theatre was also known as Cine Roma back in 1937, it showed Italian films.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on April 14, 2006 at 5:15 pm

Thanks Warren. I am not sure how one would list them, but the old Criterion and the Vitagraph both deserve a listing.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on April 14, 2006 at 9:54 am

Sorry, I found that one. It is the VITAGRAPH (44th & Broadway) that appears to be missing.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on April 14, 2006 at 9:30 am

There appears to be no listing for Paramount’s Broadway Theatre. (1915-1928)on 41st street. Does anyone have any information?

ThePhotoplayer on March 29, 2006 at 8:13 am

While remodeled several times, there are some typical DeRosa features, particularly the “swish” trim around the top and bottom of the boxes.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on January 11, 2006 at 1:19 am

The last time I had been in the Winter Garden was for “Beatlemania” back around 1977 or ‘78. “Not the Beatles, but an incredible simulation.” Wow, nearly 30 years ago… time flies when you’re having fun!

LuisV on January 10, 2006 at 9:09 pm

Wow, I haven’t been to the Broadway theater in many years. The 2 shows I rmember seeing there were “The Wiz” with Stepahie Mills in the eighties and “Miss Saigon” in the mid nineties. I have to say I am surprised to see the relative lack of ornamentation on this theater. Especially after just having popped my head on Sunday into the incredible “Hollywood” theater just around the corner. Thanks Ed for the pictures!

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on January 10, 2006 at 2:37 pm

I visited this theater Sunday afternoon and took in a performance from 8th row center. The proscenium opening is huge, particularly from that perspective, so I can only imagine what it must have been like with the large, curved Cinerama screen installed! I’m not sure what the original decor was like, but it looks like it could have been in the Beaux Arts style or possible Adams (judging from the foyer), with lots of arch moldings creating space for mural work. Today, it is probably one of the least ornamented theaters on Broadway. The wall space in the auditorium between the moldings is now predominantly adorned with red velvet to match the seat upholstery. The most dominant feature in this space is the elliptical dome and chandelier, which is now partially obscured with rigging for stage lighting. The main foyer is much more elegantly appointed and ornate. I snapped a series of photos while I was there; however, some of the shots in the auditorium came out a bit dark. I also lacked a wide enough lens to really capture the proscenium and dome:

Facade and adjacent skyscraper
Dome and chandelier
Balcony view 1
Balcony view 2
Left side boxes view 1
Left side boxes view 2
Seat end-cap
Right side boxes
Proscenium arch view 1
Proscenium arch view 2
Main foyer

In the 2nd shot, you can see the way the new facade was incorporated into the adjacent skyscraper as Warren pointed out in one of his posts above. In the balcony views, you can make out where the projection booth was located (particularly in the 2nd view where you can make out the large windows at the rear of the balcony). What I’m wondering is, for the Cinerama exhibition, did they use this high projection booth? Or did they build a new booth at the rear of the orchestra (where there is a sound board now)? I know that Cinerama required a more level projection field than most rear-balcony booths provided and I notice in the ad posted by RobertR in June that the illustration seems to depict projection from the rear orchestra.

RobertR on July 27, 2005 at 12:08 pm

Here is a 1952 teaser ad for “This is Cinerama” at the Broadway View link