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In Indiana there’s a LAH-feyette, in Louisiana it’s LAUGH-yet but here is La-FAY-it.
Elite has always been EEE-lite as long as I’ve been listening to the local dialect (seventy-five years).
Yes, there have been five (5) Elites here. It was 1926 that four were listed: 813 Monroe (former Central as early as 1915), 837 2nd Ave S (former Colonial as early as 1917), 239 4th Ave N and 4810 Charlotte.
By 1928 two of the Sudekum brothers were managing the Monroe and 4th Ave Elites, indicating Crescent ownership.
The Elite on 2nd Ave S was eventually replaced by the new Capitol (not to be confused with the one at 6th and Church).
The building on Monroe may still be standing- it was in recent years just a half a block down from where the State later stood. The
The Elite on Charlotte was replaced in 1927 with a new one of the same name at 4700.
The Elite at 239 4th Ave COULD have been the in the same building as the 1914 Log Cabin (later the 1915-16 Victoria) which is listed at 237 and which I have been told had an entrance into the Arcade.
A 1918 notice says the Dixie Amusement Company owns both the Elite and the Strand. As late at 1920 the Strand and the Elite were running separate ads in the paper.
In 1928 four (4) Elites were listed but alas none was the one at 233. The Strand at 235 lasted until 1930.
By the way, you do know how we pronounce “Elite” in Nashville, don’t you? It’s like Lafayette- just a local thing.
Hold everything- I told that wrong. I have confused the two Crescents. The Crescent at 233 opened at least by 1909, became the Elite during 1910 and was listed through 1916.
The Crescent that was the result of the merger of the twins was opened in 1915 at 215-217.
Incidentally when the property at 215- 217 was being remodeled in the 1980s I spoke to Jimmy Glascock who was involved in the project and he verified that a wall had been knocked out between the two addresses (the twin theater common wall). He also referred me to a local historian (whom I will not name lest I embarrass him) who argued that there had never been a theater at 215-217!
No, Joe, they were different houses. The Crescent at 233 started in 1909 and I believe was a merger of the two “twin” theaters which are mentioned in a 1957 Crescent Amusement Co publication, though not named. I cannot prove but believe they were called the Ruby and the Rhinestone, operating side-by-side with one ticket office.
The Strand at 235 is not listed until 1915 when managed by Roy Shelton. A late 1916 newspaper article said that after Tony Sudekum had bought W H Wassmann’s Knickerbocker and Crystal the Strand was his only opposition, indicating that not only was it a different theater but that it was independent of Sudekum.
I believe the theater had begun to show movies prior to 1941. There was a Pete Smith Specialty shot at Clyde Beatty’s Jungle Zoo north of town where Gateway Shopping Center is now located. The short was said to have premiered at the Florida in June of 1940. Can anyone add to or correct this info? Thanks.
If I’m not mistaken “To Kill A Mockingbird” premiered in Mobile before playing Monroeville.
Do you remember where on the square the theater was located? Thanks, Dave
The Loew’s Melrose was in the community of Melrose; Green Hills is on Hillsboro Road.
Does anyone know what theater or theatre “Hobson’s Choice” played here in 1954?
TheatreOrgan: I just noticed you mentioned Leon Cole- I think it was spelled without the S – He was a very well-known organist around here in my youth, played the Centennial Park concerts etc. I believe he had a son who was killed in the war. Very talented musician.
Somewhere there is a mention of a “talkie” sound system being bought for the Capitol about the time it burned and the system then being installed in the Fifth Avenue.
Butch: The Paramount, the Tennessee, Loew’s and the “New Princess” were all operating during the 1960s. The New Princess was for a time called the Cinerama and after Loew’s burned in 1967, they took over the New Princess and called it Loew’s Crescent. I know the Fifth Avenue was out of business before the sixties but I cannot remember when the Knickerbocker closed. Some other oldster ought to chime in here on this.
Can anyone tell me if the Paradise still had vaudeville acts between the pictures in 1947?
TLSLOEWS- good to see you so far from Nashville.
Vastor: I hope you saw the name “Hillsboro” on the cornice of the old entrance. If you had walked inside you could still see sort of an atrium near the back of the present establishment, which served as a small lobby to the Hillsboro.
The Parthenon does not have a page here. It was at 411 Church St and only lasted about a year from mid-1915 to mid-1916.
Harry Sudekum died young in 1930. His widow Lucille did not die until 1954 but is buried or entombed with him in the old Mausoleum at Spring Hill. Harry managed the Princess in its early days.
Clarence"Hap" Sudekum was the youngest of the Sudekum brothers and managed the Roxy all through the 1940s.
There’s an old Nashville story of which several versions have been told. Put simply it has been said that when Emma Abbott (mentioned above) was here to open the new Vendome, she went to Sunday service at McKendree Methodist in the next block and was shocked to hear the minister attack the opening of the new theater and the acting profession in general. The story goes that Miss Abbott rose to her feet and defended her profession and the people in it. Varying reactions from the congregation have been reported. Some claim that when the closing hymn was sung, everyone else remained silent so they could hear Miss Abbott’s voice.
I went to a theater in the Bronx in 1947 to see a friend of my dad’s who was appearing there in vaudeville. Can anyone tell me which Bronx theaters had vaudeville at that time? Many thanks Dave Price
I just happened to run across a 1916 trade mag with mention of Nashville’s Bijou (recently opened) and Elite (I assume the one on Fifth Ave.
Try this link:
David: I have the cut-out story but apparently failed to write down the date of it. A pic of Lou says “Banner Photo by Bob Ray,” so that tells us which paper. Mark Howard wrote the story caled, “Soft-Shoe, Popcorn Carts, & Marx Brothers.” There’s a mention on the back of Gov Alexander, so that helps with the date.
Thanks, TLSLoews. I’ve been here all along. Just haven’t said much lately.
There was a great article about Lou Rubenstein maybe twenty years ago in one of the papers. I used to run into him in the Shoney’s on Murphy Road when he lived nearby. Fascinating old Crescent man.
Danny52: The original Grand was on Cherry Street (now Fourth Ave) north of Cedar (now Charlotte) and burned November 8, 1902. The name Grand was immediately carried to the former Masonic which was on the north side of Church Street at 422, whereas the New Princess was on the south side in the same block at 415 starting in 1951. There had very briefly been a Parthenon Theater on the south side at 411 in 1915-1916.
Just for the record and to whoever wrote the opening comment above, the Capitol Blvd address and the Sixth Ave address are the same building; the ole Knick had two entrances, one on each of these streets.
Great pic, TLSLOEWS. To the youngsters looking at this, the main part of this property facing Church Street was occupied by the Jackson Building, the Princess lobby was on the westerly (right) side over next to McKendree Methodist and the auditorium was at the back of the property, behind the Jackson Bldg.
Old timers recall eating at Shackletts in the Jackson Bldg. They had a bread cart that came around and you could pick what you wanted.
Most things that I recall fondly do not exist any more!!