Showing 101 - 113 of 113 comments
I maintained the projection and sound equipment in this house starting in the early ‘80s when it was purchased by Walnut Properties (along with the Palomar, Star and Towne). It was a very nice house. It ran as a spanish speaking house for a while.
I was intimately involved with this theatre from the time it was purchased by Walnut Properties (along with the Crest, Palomar and Towne) in the early ‘80s until April of 1994. It was one of my favorite houses.
Does anyone out there remember the downtown San Diego theatres of the 1970s?
My name is Dan Whitehead and I’m the guy who used to let Steve Karo into the Balboa to look around. I remember one time he and his wife brought in a chamber orchestra and a little group of people. The chamber orchestra played Bach on the stage and every single note of the music could be heard all the way to the top row of the balcony. The acoustics of this house are nothing less than perfect. I never could understand why the old Fox Theatre was used for Symphony Hall as the acoustics of the Fox were notoriously awful and it took lots of money to correct them. The acoustics of the Balboa were, as I say, perfect.
I worked as the day projectionist of this theatre from 1974 to 1978 for Mr. Wesley Andrews and Mr. Charlie Smith. We showed three featrues and changed features twice a week. Admission was .99 cents and hours of operation were from 9:30A to 5:30A. It was later bought by Walnut Properties (Pussycat Theatres). Those were good days.
I was working for Walnut Properties (aka Pussycat Theatres) when they bought this theatre. At that time it was called the Savoy and had been closed for a long time. We changed the name to the Bijou. I installed all of the projection equipment as the theatre had been completely stripped. I was intimately connected with the following downtown theatres from November of 1972 through April of 1994: Plaza, Cabrillo, Balboa, Off-Broadway, Pussycat, Aztec, Casino and Bijou (which, as I say, was known as the Savoy when Walnut bought it and had been many other names over the years). All these theatres closed one by one and I removed the projection equipment from many of them. Ah, those were the days.
I wonder if they found the cedar room in the basement?
I hung around OB in the days of my youth in the early ‘70s. At the request of the manager of the Strand, a lady named Marie Mahre (spelling?), I was the projectionist at a special showing of “Woodstock” in 1974 (I think it was '74; that was so long ago now). At that time I was the day projectionist at the Aztec Theatre which was on the corner of 5th and “G” Streets downtown. I did a lot of shopping at The Black and my favorite restaurant was a mexican place across the street from the Strand called Margarita’s. Ah, those were the days.
I am delighted that the Ken Cinema is still a single screen house and that they still operate in the old fashioned way with changeovers and carbon arc lamps. That is how things were when I learned to run “the booth” back in November of 1972 at the old Cabrillo Theatre on Plaza Street at Horton Plaza (both the Cabrillo and Plaza Street are long gone). Somewhere back in the ‘70s Mr. William Rankin and I motorized the masking at the Ken. Boy, that sure was a long time ago.