Alba Theatre

4816 N. Kedzie Avenue,
Chicago, IL 60625

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Khnemu on July 3, 2017 at 10:12 pm

A senior citizen retirement apartment building is on the site of the Alba today.

rivest266 on November 11, 2016 at 10:45 pm

March 7th, 1923 grand opening ad for Capitol in the photo section.

rivest266 on November 11, 2016 at 10:44 pm

December 25th, 1934 grand opening ad as B & K Alba in the photo section.

Broan on January 17, 2016 at 5:53 pm

Here is a THSA picture.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on July 30, 2014 at 9:18 pm

This house reopened as the Capitol Theatre on March 7, 1923. It had been remodeled and redecorated after having been closed for many years. The architect for the project, Albert A. Schwartz, and the decorator, O. J. Bodelson, wrote an article about the project for the April 7 issue of Exhibitors Herald. There are four photos, and the article mentions a Kimball Organ Co. Unit Orchestra being installed in the renovated house.

DavidZornig on April 19, 2014 at 5:34 am

I added a flyer from the Alba Go-Go.

The Alba is also mentioned in this article.

RiisPark on March 13, 2013 at 1:18 am

In 1966 the Alba became the ‘Alba a Go Go’ and featured live teen bands.

Broan on March 19, 2012 at 7:03 pm

The Economist lists Foltz & Brand as architects.

Broan on February 11, 2010 at 5:27 pm

in 1954 the alba became one of the first bowling alleys in chicago to go automatic.

pritikin1 on December 6, 2009 at 3:17 pm

I lived a block away during the 40s and early 50s, There were 2 other movie theaters near by, the Terminal on Lawrence just a block away from the beginning of the Ravenswood el, and across the street the Metro.Their screen was behind you when you walked into the theater.
After movies played downtown, they then went to the Uptown at Lawrence and Broadway, then to the Terminal and finally the Alba. I remember when it was converted to a bowling alley. I even set a few pins there! I learned something from your site… that ALBA was short for Albany Park…

kencmcintyre on January 24, 2009 at 7:05 pm

From the Chicago Tribune, 12/9/56:

A conversion which changed the Alba Theater to the Alba Bowling Lanes, 4814 N. Kedzie Ave., included tearing out a balcony, constructing a false ceiling and soundproofing it, installing new lighting and correcting the pitch of the floor. That latter operation, providing for 12 alleys, was designed so that the pits are at the front, or stage area, of the former theater layout.

A game room and lounge is now in the lobby area, but owner Edwin Meyer still utilizes as his office the office used by the theater cashier. The projection room of the theater has become a storage room.

Broan on January 24, 2007 at 1:40 pm

The Capitol name was 1924-1926.

Broan on January 24, 2007 at 1:37 pm

The original name from 1915 was Albany Park, then Capitol; it closed around 1927, and was converted into a bowling alley. When B&K took it over opening Christmas 1934, they spent $25,000 under plans from Rissman & Hirschfeld remodeling it back into a theater; B&K said that the exterior would be “the most elaborate of anything so far seen in Chicago, surpassing even the newest loop cinemas in the use of neon tube lights and mazdas.” It closed sometime in the early 50s, briefly served as a meeting hall, in 1952 turned back into bowling lanes, in 1966-68 served as temporary home to Frankel Furniture, and in 1968 it reopened as the short-lived rock club Strawberry Fields.