Comments from clarkw

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clarkw
clarkw commented about Badger Theater on Feb 21, 2013 at 9:16 pm

The organ belonged to a gent in Milwaukee by 1978 or 79, as we worked on it there trying to get it going again. It had been water damaged in the theatre. He had removed it from the Badger very recently……

clarkw
clarkw commented about State Theater on Mar 27, 2012 at 10:57 pm

The State organ was a Kimball of 2 manuals and about 6 ranks. We used to have the Solo windchest from it plus a few other parts in the warehouse with the Oriental Kimball, so some of it survived.

clarkw
clarkw commented about Badger Theater on Mar 27, 2012 at 10:43 pm

The organ in this house was a 2/6 Seeberg/Smith with a roll player that went to Milwaukee in the mid-‘70s. Don’t know what finally became of it.

clarkw
clarkw commented about Villa Theater on Mar 27, 2012 at 10:32 pm

The basic Kilgen organ from the Ritz is in private hands in Columbus, Ohio now.

clarkw
clarkw commented about North Center Theatre on Mar 27, 2012 at 10:20 pm

The organ itself went to Jim Walgreen and was broken up for parts when he got rid of everything. It was in BAD shape by that point, which is really a shame.

clarkw
clarkw commented about Oriental Theater on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:40 pm

I’m certainly late here, but a gent that I had met back in the late ‘80s was in direct touch with Mr. DeAngelis at the time, whose wife had just died. Michael DeAngelis was in his upper 80s and said that he still had all of the blueprints for his theatres at his home. He was living in (I believe) Rochester, NY. I tried to get some local theatre/organ folks up there to look him up at the time but nothing came of it. That was probably near the end of the window of time that he could have been interviewed and given his treasures to posterity. I never heard anything else but seem to think that he passed away not too long after that. I have no idea if anyone ever got to him or saved his irreplaceable archive.

clarkw
clarkw commented about Columbia Theatre on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:27 pm

This house might be the one that someone suggested was built for other uses. It was an odd building that never really looked like a proper theatre. It finished life as a meat market before going totally dark, losing its marquee, and eventually being demolished. It was always know as a B house and a lot of the older folks in town remembered never going there because of the rumors of it being dirty and having rats!!

clarkw
clarkw commented about American Theatre on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:25 pm

This was a very early theatre – ‘teens. There is a fabulous picture extant showing it in the glory days with patriotic bunting hanging everywhere on the facade. This was the building that was destroyed by fire in the '40s, to be replaced by a cinder block rectangle that had nothing interesting about it except a couple of deco-ish lighting fixtures on the side walls. The 3-rank Wurlitzer organ was installed here and replaced an older Kimball organ – likely a tubular-pneumatic job. The theatre finished up as “Ziegler Hall” that operated as a sort of gospel, amateur night venue for a couple of years before folding and becoming the usual parking lot.

clarkw
clarkw commented about State Theater on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:19 pm

The theatre was quite fancy for Liverpool – to my eye, the fanciest we had. It was totally intact when torn down ca. 1973 – all the scenery was still hanging in the loft, lights were there, booth was intact, piano in the pit, lighting fixtures and draperies still hanging (but filthy to the point you couldn’t even see them until the roof came off). There was once a 2/3 Smith organ installed, which was long gone. I still have a tube of gel and a wooden pin from the fly rail. We salvaged all the stage lighting equipment and a good deal of curtain fabric when the place was open to the weather. Many of the curtains (organ lofts, etc) were actual velvet – gold, and a burnt umber color – and the stage swags were the same material but beige. The backing was rotten but the draperies came through a machine washing and looked like new. The house itself was loaded with painted frescoes, ornamental lanterns, iron railings, and general hot stuff. The walls and upper areas were a deep green trimmed in dark gold but the main floor had been painted pepto- bismol pink up as far as they could reach on a ladder. The house was for sale for $20,000 intact but the time wasn’t right and it passed into history as (as the local news put it), “a second-class citizen”. Our loss!

clarkw
clarkw commented about Ceramic Theater on Mar 6, 2012 at 6:07 pm

This theatre was definitely built as a theatre – my great-grandparents performed on its stage early on. It was constructed and advertised as perhaps the finest stage between New York and Chicago. I also have a copy of the opening program, as well as photos from very early. The organ was a Bartola – the Wurlitzer was not installed here but in the American Theatre up the street where it replaced an old Kimball. There are articles in ancient newspapers about it.