Savoy Theatre

710 Mattison Avenue,
Asbury Park, NJ 07712

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The Savoy

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Opened May 5, 1911. Originally built for live entertainment, it showed movies from 1931 to 1950. In the 1950’s, it booked burlesque shows and housed a summer theater. It closed in 1976 as a pornographic movie house.

Contributed by TC

Recent comments (view all 37 comments)

LuisV
LuisV on December 28, 2011 at 9:57 am

This is my first visit to Asbury since I posted in early October that the theater had been sold to Sackman and that a restoration was planned. Mattison is one block off of the main drag of Cookman and is much quieter but a restored theater will help change that. The Office building which envelopes the theater is fairly large and handsome. However, the first thing to go should be the storefront mosque and the adjacent Bail Bonds office. This is not the image you want to represent. The Marque, which was removed in the 80’s, should be restored to define the entrance of this theater. Peering through the “lobby” entrance it appears that some work has started, but the lobby appears to be very disappointing. It is really small and doesn’t appear to have ANY character at all. There is a small staircase off that lobby that I assume would go up to the balcony. The new owners say that they expect to have a 1,000 seat theater but the capacity at the time of closing was in the 800’s. A prior plan to renovate envisioned a comfortable theater of 600. No offense, but New Jersey is not one of the slim states and larger seats will be required. I also have to assume that nothing is left of the original ornamentation as none ever been referenced in any article that I’ve seen so the “state of the art” performing arts space will likely just be a “modern” space with little reference to the past.

LuisV
LuisV on January 1, 2012 at 1:52 pm

I found a photo in the book Asbury Park’s Glory Days that shows that the Savoy did not ever have a marquee but it DID have a tall blade over the entrance that spelled out Savoy. At a minimum, a marquee or a blade needs to be installed to give this theater, which is otherwise hidden from the street, some presence.

Gamble
Gamble on March 24, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Ran into the owner today. He said its ‘sold’ and there are no seats, but said the stage was there tho. I could see into the lobby, or what was left of it and it looks like theyre doing work in there.

AlbertCoates
AlbertCoates on August 4, 2012 at 5:35 pm

I remember “The Colossus of New York” played here in the 1950’s. Fun movie for a little boy. In the 1970’s they showed X rated movies. It closed at the end of December 1976. I am posting a 1914 photo of the theater with its “blade”.

SYFYGUY
SYFYGUY on January 4, 2015 at 9:16 pm

No one mentioned the 1965-66 winter stock co. that operated it as the Asbury Playhouse. I performed my first role as an actor on that stage as Rumpelstiltskin. And the rest is history. (lol). Actually, I am a SAG actor now. Who knew?

RHanna
RHanna on September 23, 2015 at 11:30 am

I was an actor/apprentice in the 1965-66 Asbury Playhouse at the Savoy Theater. I played Marvin in Enter Laughing, Bollinger in Inherit the Wind, a Shark in West Side Story, chorus in Brigadoon. I’d be interested in any production photos that might exist. Contact me at .

rivest266
rivest266 on March 20, 2016 at 8:00 am

May 5th, 1911 grand opening ad in photo section.

rivest266
rivest266 on March 28, 2016 at 8:44 am

December 25th, 1970 grand opening ad as adult cinema in the photo section. It was an Art Theatre Guild theatre.

walterk
walterk on August 8, 2016 at 6:31 am

Here’s an article from today’s Asbury Park Press talking about the renovation of the Savoy, which is currently under way. It includes a short video of the interior.

There is also a 22 photo collection titled “The lost theatres of Asbury Park”, which is also the title of a seperate article in today’s Press. There’s a link to that on the article page, or you can just click here. Always nice to see an old theatre come back to life! ;–) .

RHanna
RHanna on August 8, 2016 at 7:53 am

So glad this theater is finally being renovated and not torn down. I’m still looking for any production photos from 1965-66 winter season of Asbury Playhouse at the Savoy Theater. I was a young actor, just starting out in the business. Now semiretired.

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