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The theater is now called United Palace of Cultural Arts, and should probably be changed in the main heading above:
That may explain the extra seating that John described.
We have to remember that the theater also had been altered to become a store for at least 20 years. I don’t know what they did to convert it to a store, whether it used the theater ornamentation on the walls, and just took out the seats, or if it was gutted when it became a store already, to be rebuilt decades later when the church bought it.
Great photos! It seems to be in a little worse shape than Loews 46th St, but even so, looks repairable. A lot of the plaster seems to have been lost on the right side, as well as part of the Proscenium due to water I assume.
But it’s remarkably clean….the floors of the balcony and inner lobby appear to have been swept clean!
It looks restorable.
Yes, that’s when Friedrich’s moved in. It was there in the 70’s. Don’t know when it moved in however.
For many years it was Friedrich’s Childrens Clothing Store. If the 1980’s tax photos are available, it may show it as Friedrichs. I think that store opened in the theater after the theater closed. It closed in the 80’s some time, and became the church.
The Belvedere, now the Christ Tabernacle, had huge exposure this past week with the Vice President Biden, Gov Cuomo, and other officials…..along with thousands of cops attending funeral services here for Officer Ramos, NYPD shot in the line of duty.
This is certainly sad news about the Ridgewood Theater. Something that we all have been preparing for for some time, so it’s not a shock, but still very sad to hear. RIP Ridgewood Theater, we still have the memories.
A real nice project for the area. While none of the original exterior of the building still remains anyway, and am pretty sure very little if any of the interior of the old Alhambra, this does improve the building, while still keeping a small hint of it’s former purpose as a theater. A win for everyone.
The Major Theatre isn’t as intact anymore as the original opening comments are since I wrote the intro back in 2004. The junk flea market type store in the theater had closed in the late 2000’s, and a Verizon Wireless store had opened in the lobby part of the space. Of course all the old mirrors, ceiling, etc that is described in the original intro are now either removed or covered over. The marquee is still out front, and Verizon uses it for it’s store sign.
Renting auditoriums out to church groups on Sunday mornings? So what, who the heck would be going to movies on Sunday mornings anyway? Sounds like a smart business decision to me.
Judging by the street view, it appears the Peerless Theater is now being used as a Church. Anyone have any idea what remains inside of the theater if anything?
The exterior of the current store building does very much have the distinctive “Childs Restaurant” facade, and is definitely 1930’s in design. It was Hamburg Savings Bank when I was a kid, and I think it became a Greenpoint Savings Bank at some point.
The old article was very interesting. it was only about 20 years old when torn down.
The mention of “Tramps and Undesirables” in the building was hysterical!!
BTW, Mini Mart is still in the building at the corner, if you look at the street view. It was always Mini Mart in my time. Interestingly the attractive building next to the “Childs” building in the photo Themonagan posted recently was also torn down at some point, replaced with a one story building Mini Mart is in.
Speaking of the M line running at ground level, there is also a photo on the net somewhere of the Forest Ave Station when it ran on the ground, with the el being built up above the old station. Interesting the original Forest Ave station was actually on the OTHER side of Forest Ave (going towards Fresh Pond) than it is now as an elevated station.
I use the word “renovations” lightly when talking about what will happen too the old Ridgewood Theater. “Renovations”, would more be in keeping with “renovating what is there”, not destroying the theater’s features in the process, which would include interior “demolition” as opposed to “renovation”.
I hope it’s a “renovation” as opposed to demolition inside the Ridgewood Theater.
As for the Willoughby, does anyone know of any interior photos? Is there anything left of it’s theater days in the church?
I think the Pussycat Theater photos belong here?
Well the original building was nondescript to begin with. I never said it was a restoration, just that the renovation of the building surely looks better than the crappy 1980’s era type of facade that was on the building. it’s a huge improvement.
I am amazed that the restoration of the building! I took a photo of the old Starr Theater in 2005, and to compare it to the current photo is textbook example of how the neighborhood is improving.
In my photo, you could still make out the top edge of the original facade of the old historic photo Lost Memory Added. I recommend looking in the photo section!
Again, I totally agree with both of you….just that the above can’t be changed to “demolished”, as it wasn’t demolished in the same way the “Commodore” was.
That said, it doesn’t make it any better.
John, while I agree with you, it’s sickening….that said, it isn’t really “demolished”, as they are building the new construction within and above the shell of the old theater building, so while it’s been shelled to the bare bricks, and pulled back a little, the original shell of the base of the first few floors of the new building are in fact still the walls of the old theater. “Demolished” is not accurate…although if there was a setting for “semi-demolished”. It’s somewhat similar to the complete shelling of and partial destruction of the old Oasis theater on Fresh Pond Rd, although in that case, no new construction was built into the old building yet, even if the entire Fresh Pond facade, as well as the lobby half of the building were demolished.
Wow that is a wonderful historic photo. I wish the update emails would send out emails when people add photos to a theater we are watching, like when someone makes a comment. the only way to know is when someone makes a comment when adding a photo like this.
Very interesting article. The original name for Seneca Ave is Covert St (that’s why the first article mentions Covert St). The article also mentions Van Cortland Ave, which today is known as 71 Ave.
I sure would like to try, but not sure.. I am kicking myself for not going to the Ridgewood theater some years ago when there was a group of people here going. No one would have thought it would have closed soon after.
Casablanca, It’s a good choice of movie too. A shame Star Wars or Wizard of Oz, the first two choices weren’t possible due to licensing, as I can see how those would have been the first two choices. Casablanca is a good third choice though….it’s also a classic.
EVEN better, isn’t it wonderful to see a status change on the page above!!!! OPEN (Showing Movies)!!!!!!
How often do we see it change that way instead of the other way!!!
Wow….is all I can say. For all the depressing news we usually hear on these theater pages of demolitions, conversions, etc, isn’t it nice to actually have something like this happen to a theater.