RKO Alden Theatre

165-16 Jamaica Avenue,
Jamaica, NY 11432

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Showing 101 - 125 of 126 comments

jack4c on December 25, 2005 at 11:22 am

Yes, that is the number posted on two large signs currently on the structure. There is an additional much smaller sign (“office for rent”) posted in one of the second floor windows with a cell number. It appears to be 347-276-6041. May be 6091.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on December 16, 2005 at 9:11 am

Jack4c… that number is no longer in service. Perhaps the sign has been there for some time. I’d love to know if any of this theater survives, besides just the other shell.

jack4c on December 3, 2005 at 3:20 pm

The building appears vacant and for rent currently, at least what I believe was the Alden. The number on the for rent sign is 212 840- 9699. It’s the large red brick structure on the east side of 165th St. halfway down the block south of Jamaica Av.

RobertR on October 22, 2005 at 10:25 am

This August of 1958 ad for “The Fly' shows up what Warren said about the product split that happened because of the Merrick and Alden. All the RKO’s are getting the "The Fly” and “Space Master X-7” but because it is booked in the Merrick the Alden is holding over the previous weeks “The Light in the Forest” and “The Story of Perri”.
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mauriceski on September 30, 2005 at 6:38 pm

the alden was my favorite theater because they had the best movies of the day all of the warner brothers movies with stars like cagney raft, davis, crawford, bogart,and bacall.

mauriceski on September 30, 2005 at 6:29 pm

the savoy was on jamaica ave and adistance from my house. so i went to the plaza.on saturdays the the price was eleven cents .i usally had sixteen cents . eleven cents for the movie and five cents for a box of good and plenty

AlanShore1 on September 27, 2005 at 6:11 am

I don’t remember the hillside, carleton linden plaza or marlboro. The Savoy I do remember in the ‘50s. Triple features – a war movie, a monster movie and a western – all in one long afternoon!

I saw the Three Stooges perform at the Valencia in about ‘61 or so during their resurgence at that time in TV.

mauriceski on September 26, 2005 at 8:43 pm

in the previous comment i ment linden not liden

mauriceski on September 26, 2005 at 8:40 pm

the pecking order of the movie houses in jamaica during my time wre as follows.valencia,alden,merrick.jamaica,hillside,carleton,liden,plazaaand the marlboro.

mauriceski on September 18, 2005 at 6:35 pm

this theater is where i saw night and day also to have and have not with the young beautiful and unforgettable lauren bacall.also objective burma and most othe big warner brothers movies of the 1940s .at this point in time movies and baseball were bigger than life

RobertR on August 28, 2005 at 10:56 am

How odd it seems to see a film saying “direct from Radio City” and then playing the Alden, but 1971 was probably right before it went into it’s decent of horror and kung-fu films
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RobertR on August 28, 2005 at 8:02 am

“Blacula” played the Alden in 1973
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br91975 on July 8, 2005 at 5:47 am

For what it’s worth, in resolving a four-plus month-old mystery, Fred Astaire’s final film was the 1981 thriller (and former Showtime staple) ‘Ghost Story’.

RobertR on July 1, 2005 at 3:02 pm

You cant go wrong with a fun double bill like this!! The main feature had in it’s cast the legendary stripper Lili St. Cyr
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Bway on March 19, 2005 at 7:15 pm

Since the entrance was on 165th street, the address of 9211 165th St should be used for this theaters address

Yes, that would be better than “Jamaica and 165th” as it says now. However, the Jamaica Ave address could also be used (the new entrance through what was once a store on Jamaica Ave which became the permanent and only entrance once RKO took over). So this theater really has two addresses (even though the building never moved). Hmmm, I wonder what happens when you have two addresess for the same theater, if they use the last address the theater used or the original.

iemola1 on February 26, 2005 at 10:36 am

I’m pretty sure Mr. Astaire made some other films after Francis Ford Coppolla’s film version of FINIAN’S RAINBOW in 1968. Remember his romancing Miss Jennifer Jones while trying to fleece her out of her money in Irwin Allen’s THE TOWERING INFERNO? I do. Saw it back when at the KINGSWAY.

GeorgeStrum on February 25, 2005 at 5:46 am

The last time I attended the Alden was in 1968 to see Fred Astaire’s last film “Finian’s Rainbow”. The years passed and the Alden demised. However I did hear a “rumor” about the still remaining auditorium behind the present retail spaces that a poor Pentecostal church was looking to rent the space for their services. Evidently the rumor has been proved false or the deal never went through.

AlanShore1 on December 31, 2004 at 4:18 pm

Well, it’s refreshing to find that there are people who remember and value this treasure. I grew up in Jamaica in the fifties and all of Jamaica Ave. was filled with gems of one kind or another. Anyone remember the Savoy theater? A slightly more run down sibling of the others, but they had contests with prizes in addition to triple features. The Valencia had live acts, including The Three Stooges in about 1961.

Alan M. Shore

joemasher on May 13, 2004 at 6:24 pm

I’ve been in the Alden recently—the manager took me to their storage room which is the balcony and proscenium. There’s a drop ceiling from the balcony front to the stage, and the seats have been removed. Other than that, it is very much intact!

Bway on May 13, 2004 at 9:57 am

This is very interesting that the theater may still be sitting there behind all of the retail in the lobbies. What stores currently occupy the lobbies of the building?

PeterKoch on May 13, 2004 at 8:26 am

Thank you, Warren, for this information. I am pleased that the links to images I have posted are “provoking” the posting of this new information.

PeterKoch on May 12, 2004 at 1:58 pm

The Alden is visible on the right side of the following images :


Loew’s Valencia (q.v. on this site) is also visible in image 24041. The pointed top of the baroque facade is visible in the upper left corner.

RobertR on March 25, 2004 at 7:08 am

I think the whole theatre is still there behind all of the retail

RobertR on January 29, 2004 at 10:41 am

I remember the last year or so RKO-Century did not renew the lease on the Jamaica Avenue entrance and it was turned into a store. The 165st entrance was opened for the first time in decades. They half assed re-lit the 1930’s marquee. After a shooting in which a security guard got killed the theatre closed. It seems like retail is in the lobbies only and the theatre may be intact inside.

William on November 17, 2003 at 1:40 pm

The RKO Alden Theatre is located at 165th Street & Jamaica Ave..