Loew's Victoria Theatre

233 West 125th Street,
New York, NY 10027

Unfavorite 5 people favorited this theater

Showing 26 - 50 of 70 comments

RobertR
RobertR on April 17, 2009 at 1:27 pm

Before its rebirth as Movie Center 5
View link

LuisV
LuisV on August 13, 2008 at 8:17 am

How depressing! :–)

Anyone know what the latest is on the redevelopment of this theater?

mp775
mp775 on April 16, 2008 at 7:32 am

Article in today’s AM New York. The Danforth tower plan involves further cutting up the interior space and making two small theaters; the community would like to see the theater restored.

stevebob
stevebob on March 29, 2008 at 7:36 pm

I just noticed “Style: Unknown” in the description. Shouldn’t it be Adam?

soothsayer
soothsayer on March 9, 2008 at 10:52 am

here are some interior photos of this theater
http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/hhh.ny0781

it includes some information on the architect, date, who built it, the suppliers of the building materials, etc.

KingBiscuits
KingBiscuits on February 7, 2008 at 9:02 pm

Two words.

Later on, it went back to the old name but with a slight change, as the Harlem Victoria (found this through New York Times microfilm).

LuisV
LuisV on July 31, 2007 at 8:22 am

Update on the Victoria Theater’s redevelopment plans. This excerpt comes from the July 26th 2007 edition of The New York Sun about all of the development projects underway in Harlem;

“Real estate and community leaders expect the Empire State Development Corporation and its subsidiary, the Harlem Community Development Corporation, to finally select a developer for the Victoria Theater site on West 125th Street. As reported in The New York Sun last month, the Jazz Museum in Harlem is part of a bid by Danforth Development Partners to renovate the Victoria Theater. The Jazz Museum would get between 10,000 and 20,000 square feet of exhibition space. The buildings would include two theaters to be used by the Classical Theater of Harlem, the Bill T. Jones & Arnie Zane Dance Company, and the Harlem School of Arts.”

This is great news as it appears that the theater will in fact be restored and will once again become a performing arts space. This is wonderful for Harlem and the City of New York.

LuisV
LuisV on December 17, 2006 at 6:29 am

I don’t believe there’s been any movement on this project since the last post. Should we expect change of direction now that Spitzer and the Democrats are now in power in Albany?

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 8, 2006 at 7:19 am

It wasn’t so long ago that including neighborhoods in the address (or the word “Queens” in Queens addresses) would be problematic with mapping theater addresses above. I guess Google has updated its software to correct this issue. As I said, looks like theaters are slowly but surely being updated on this site so that their addresses include zip codes. I only wish the inclusion of neighborhoods was more consistent here.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 8, 2006 at 6:09 am

Warren is correct. That goes for all of NYC except Queens. While including the neighborhood is nice for folks looking to narrow down a search or those interested in a specific geographic locality, it doesn’t help to map the theater at all. Perhaps in some future update of the website, a seperate neighborhood tag can be included for searching purposes. I have noticed that many of the theater updates going on lately have been to include a zip code in the address. Ultimately, searching by zip will probably be the best way of targeting neighborhood theaters in a search.

Nice photo’s, Ken. I took the liberty of clicking through the album for a nice little tour of former theater sites in upper Manhattan.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on May 7, 2006 at 9:26 am

Two photographs taken in July 2003:
Facade and marquee:
http://flickr.com/photos/kencta/142173254/
Detail in close-up:
http://flickr.com/photos/kencta/142173666/

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on January 18, 2006 at 6:49 am

Thanks Warren. And without a single square inch of the Victoria granted landmark designation, the developers are beholden to no one as to their vision of “preservation.”

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on January 17, 2006 at 10:43 am

I caught the end of an item on the news last night (I think WABC channel 7 here in NYC) about a plan that has been finalized to redevelop the Victoria building. I didn’t catch the details at all, but there will be a building rising above the theater and – while it will not be restored to single screen theatrical use – as much of the architectural elements and detail work will be retained and restored as possible. Not sure if this will prove to be another RKO Keith’s project in the making. I know that they’ve been looking for a developer and taking bids on this site for at least the past year or more. I couldn’t find the story on the net, but I admit I didn’t really search all that hard. I tried the NY Times sight, as well as WABC and WNBC sites. I also Googled a few variations on the topic, but didn’t find anything. Anyone have details on the current plans?

RobertR
RobertR on November 1, 2005 at 1:40 am

This theatre was last known as Movie Center 5 so that should at least be the alternate name.

dave-bronx™
dave-bronx™ on October 31, 2005 at 10:08 pm

lostmemory: – could it be that in 1917 theatres were not specifically designated as motion picture theatres? It probably had a working stage and presented vaudville as well as movies. Modern NYC C of O’s indicate motion picture theatre when there is no stage, fly-loft, scenery, an abundance of draperies and high-voltage stage lighting boards, or performers using candles or cigarettes. The combination of those elements in the past have been the source of many disasterous theatre fires that resulted in large losses of life. A C of O for a motion picture theatre requires less in the way of fire supression equipment and slightly less restrictive regulation by the FDNY.

Ammaat
Ammaat on October 25, 2005 at 5:38 am

The theaters did not do well because the former owners and those who leased it did not conduct business intelligently. They were more for profit and let the theatre go, so the state got a hold of it and here we are.

Warren, thank u for that piece of info, I have been looking for that for a while now. Can u elaborate on where u got it?

Also, it is rumored that the theater is to be sold to the Apollo Group for development. They will destroy the theater and cut it up. Harlem needs this theater to be Landmarked and restored. Please log on the www.haarlemvictoria.com and sign the petition and write to the representives and HCDC. We can’t let them get away with this.

RobertR
RobertR on October 18, 2005 at 5:00 am

Those were pretty good size auditoriums as a five-plex. Anyone know why it did not do well? It closed quite a while before the Magic Johnson opened up.

GeorgeStrum
GeorgeStrum on September 23, 2005 at 2:34 am

An article about Vicotria 5 was featured in this day’s, 9/23/05, Daily News.Plans are being considered to convert the theatre into some combination of hotel or condos with a cultural component. The Victoria was built by the Loews theatre chain as a classical beauty, with a domed ceiling, large murals and a deep balcony. Silent screen star Elsie Ferguson was the guest of honor on opening night in 1917. Irving Berlin and Fatty Arbuckle were also there that night.

BobT
BobT on July 31, 2005 at 1:37 pm

Thanks KenRoe. It was suprising it was shot here. The theatre definitely fit in and looked like it would be in India. The gold, the carpets and huge carved doors. Kudos to the location scout. Gonna check out the Loew’s 175th Street Theatre posts.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on July 31, 2005 at 12:17 pm

BobT;
The location work done for “The Guru” (2002) UK/France/USA was filmed inside the Thomas Lamb designed Loew’s 175th Street Theatre, Manhattan.

Exterior shots and some scenes in the earlier part of the movie were filmed on location outside and around the RKO Keith’s Richmond Hill, Queens. The marquee was renovated on this theatre by the film production company.

Both theatres are listed on Cinema Treasures.

I love this movie, it’s fun and light hearted and it’s got great shots of the theatres too!

BobT
BobT on July 31, 2005 at 11:55 am

Does anyone know if this is the theatre used in the movie “The Guru”?In the film Jim Mistry and Heather Graham do a fanatasy paraody of Bollywood films to a song from “Grease” and it takes place in a huge gilded theatre. On the commentary tract Mistry says the theatre is in Harlem but doesn’t name it nor do the closing credits. It’s a huge place with a grand staircase.