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Thanks for remembering when showplace meant showplace and cathedral meant my place. Every place else was, well, modestly put, no place. The Fox fanfare in my place meant “get set for magic!”(well at least. most of the time). Gone is the love that was once divine, as F.Scott Fitzgerald wrote in “The Great Gatsby” but it is still nice to be remembered by Cole Porter and in “Guys and Dolls”. Ben Hall did a nice job of telling my story in his “The Best Remaining Seats”. Today when I want to see a show, I float over to Jersey City to Loew’s Jersey where the big show is still a big show. It’s still hard to believe that this “nabe” survived and I tip my top hat to those involved who value the importance of “setting” in proper presentation. The rich, warm sound of that 4/23 Wonder Morton wafting up from the orchestra pit out into the rotunda as I approach my seat makes me misty eyed. When the carbon arc projection lights up that big screen, everything old is new again. I certainly have made some adjustments but it’s nice to see that good taste in motion picture viewing can be had for the price of a ticket to this cathedral of the motion picture. Great popcorn too…
I grew up in Shelton in the sixties, which is right across the river from Derby. At that time, the Shelton Show and the Ansonia Capital were the places to see movies. The Commodore Hull still stood and the marquee still graced the sidewalk. But inside was Mascolo’s Appliance Store, where just about everyone bought their appliances. I still have a Zenith AM-FM digital clock radio that came from there. By the time my grandmother and I were frequenting Vonete’s Palace of Sweets or buying school shoes from Hubbell Bros. (both just down the street), the theater was dark and cars sat where patrons once did. Old timers said that the Commodore Hull was the place to see a show out of all the theaters in the lower valley. Mascolo’s was an odd place to shop as part of the showroom still had a slope to it and felt very much like a theater. But there you were, in the lobby of a one-time theater, looking at big black and white Zenith console television to bring the big show right into you home. Now, in that part of the valley, all three local house have been dark for some time. Even the Valley Drive-in is gone, replaced by the golden arches. Several multi-plexes have come and gone in that area but we don’t count-or mourn-them.
But what memories of those big places with all those people…
Hello everybody. Thank God Jersey gets it. My namesake theatre was taken down and OH, what a loss. Radio City was a lovely little project-and I’m glad everyone stills loves that sunrise arch-but NOTHING beats the original. But it’s gone, all gone. In Ben Hall’s book, “The Best Remaining Seats”, your wonderful edifice was mentioned as one of the 5 “wonder” theaters but one without the Morton 4/23. How nice that he is now wrong. How lovely the perfume of the popcorn in the grand foyer and, as you approach your seat, the increasing presence of that Morton! The sound, the comfort, the politeness of the staff and those big bright pictures on that big bright screen. How grand it is to be, as Gloria Swanson said in “Sunset Boulevard”, one of those “wonderful people in the dark”. Keep up the good work, FOL. Do not let the little voices distract you.It’s a grand place, if not the grandest, place to see the show. And every year, it’s grander yet! Your Loews Jersey is truly New Jersey’s Cathedral of the Motion Picture. Count me in to be in line, waiting for the box office to open and for the popcorn to pop. When I heard Mr.Ralph play that Morton, I got a little misty eyed, as I never thought I would ever hear that sound again, wafting up the aisles, into the lobby….
I lived in a suburb of Shelton and would take the train from Bridgeport. Once the new Rt. 8 opened up, we drove right by these theaters in the 70’s. A neighbor told me that the Palace was the place to see a show. He had seen the Andrew Sisters there and the place was always packed. Once drugs hit Bridgeport, people started to avoid the Park City and the whole downtown area began to fade. I happened upon the Palace one day when it was showing a film. In its final days, porn was what flickered off that big screen. The ticket taker let me take a look inside and believe me it was like going back in time. The Waterbury Palace shows the potential of this complex.