Symphony Theatre

614 S. Broadway,
Los Angeles, CA 90013

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Symphony Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Located directly opposite the Los Angeles Theatre, there is a 1920’s styled building currently on the site.

Previously on this site was the Symphony Theatre which opened in September 1914. In 1915, it was described as having and attractive front and an elaborate marquee. The Symphony Theatre was operated by Mr & Mrs C.H. Dubois. It was demolished in 1923.

Contributed by KenRoe

Recent comments (view all 19 comments)

vokoban on January 1, 2006 at 10:35 am

This, I think, is the beginning of the end and the end of this theater. I wish there was a photo of the interior at least.

(Apr. 10, 1923)
A partial interest in the property at 612-616 South Broadway, adjoining the Story Building on the south, has been sold by the Columbia Investment Company to the Warehouse Realty Company for $11,500 a front foot. The property has a frontage of approximately sixty-two feet on Broadway, and extends through to an alley for a depth of 160 feet. Present improvements consist of a two-story and basement building, the ground floor of which is occupied by the Walkover Boot Shop, and by the Symphony Theater. The deal involved the sale of a large portion of the stock in the Columbia Investment Company to the Warehouse Realty Company, which, through this transfer, becomes the virtual owner of the property. Confirmation of the purchase of additional stock or plans for the improvement of the property, could not be obtained from officials of the Warehouse Realty Company last night.

The wrecking ball arrives….maybe

(Oct. 21, 1923)
Humphrreys Jewelry Co.
616 South Broadway
Next Door to the Symphony Theater

I don’t know what happened exactly to this theater, but by 1942 there are many ads for Desmond’s at 616 South Broadway. Nothing shows up at 614 South Broadway after the mid-20’s. Maybe I’ll try to find some photos of the Story Building and there might be a surprise.

reluctantpopstar on May 5, 2007 at 10:18 am

Here’s the solution. This building was torn down in 1923, and Desmond’s Department Store was built on the spot. Opened as Desmond’s for several decades, probably never had a theater in it.

kencmcintyre on June 8, 2007 at 7:18 pm

A Harold Lloyd film was breaking attendance records at the Symphony in June 1922, according to the LA Times. It looks like the theater was torn down a year later, per Scott. There aren’t any more ads for the Symphony in the Times after 1923. Status should be closed/demolished.

kencmcintyre on July 7, 2007 at 5:53 pm

I think we’ve established that the Symphony building was replaced by Desmond’s in the early twenties. Subsequently the building that is at that address now is not connected with the original theater.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on September 8, 2007 at 3:52 pm

A Wurlitzer theater organ opus 304 style 135B was installed in the Symphony Theater on 4/20/1920.

kencmcintyre on October 30, 2007 at 6:27 am

Here is a November 1917 ad from the LA Times:

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on October 30, 2007 at 6:44 am

The Outsider with Emmy Wehlen and Herbert Heyes was released in November of 1917.

kencmcintyre on October 8, 2008 at 9:52 pm

Here’s the dentist ad that was discussed on 1/1/06.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on February 1, 2009 at 7:09 pm

The Dorothy Peyton Gray Transportation Library and Archive provides this postcard view of Broadway south of 6th Street before Desmond’s was built. The Symphony Theatre occupied the white building with the arched entrance, adjacent to the much taller Story Building on the corner. The copyright date on the postcard is 1916, two years after the Symphony opened. The theater has no marquee in this view, but there’s a big rooftop sign.

The view includes the Palace, then still the Orpheum, a few doors down Broadway. for some reason, the postcard’s colorist chose to make much of the facade of the Orpheum a reddish brown, as though it was faced with brick instead of the bright terra cotta it actually sported.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on February 24, 2014 at 8:14 am

A July 10, 1915 article in The Moving Picture World states that the Symphony Theatre at 614 South Broadway has been open for a little over ten months. The proprietor was Charles H. Dubois. Seating was 750.

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