Shadyside Theater

5518 Walnut Street,
Pittsburgh, PA 15232

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Shadyside Theater

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The Shadyside Theater, in the Shadyside section of Pittsburgh, opened in the early 1940s with 751 seats as a late-run neighborhood playing three double bills a week. That changed to two double bills a week in the late 1940s. In May 1958 it became a first-run art house with 623 new seats, beginning with “The Confessions of Felix Krull”. Sadly, during the final year or so, it was booked mainly with softcore sex films and “soft” versions of “Deep Throat” and “The Devil in Miss Jones”. Closed April 28, 1975 with a late run of “Chinatown”.

Contributed by Ed Blank

Recent comments (view all 11 comments)

raubre
raubre on June 4, 2006 at 1:39 am

I was in Shadyside yesterday. Apparently the address matches the Williams Sonmoma store, but it appears to not look like a theater at all. But there is an art gallery (called the Four Winds) next door to WS resembles a movie theater a bit more (that address is 5512 Walnut St.)

bayoob
bayoob on June 4, 2006 at 5:17 pm

this theater was gutted completely to make a mini-mall. It used to be directly across the street from Lou’s bar, I think it was Filbert Street. Hard to tell that a theater was even on Walnut street!

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on October 17, 2007 at 7:46 pm

Part of the Morris M. Finkel chain in the early Seventies, along with the Arcade, Chatham Cinema, Echo Drive-In and Mt. Oliver, all in Pittsburgh.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on November 2, 2007 at 5:02 pm

The Shadyside was listed at 5520 Walnut in the 1960 Pittsburgh yellow pages. Click on the second photo on the page for a view of the Pottery Barn at that address today:
http://tinyurl.com/ywf25z

The Williams-Sonoma store is at 5514:
http://tinyurl.com/yqcfc7

Champlin
Champlin on June 29, 2008 at 5:19 am

I’m looking for first hand accounts of seeing The Night Porter at this theater in connection with film history research I am engaged in. Anyone with memories of The Night Porter, however vague, please feel free to get in touch with me. .co.uk

femmeshui
femmeshui on January 23, 2011 at 10:54 pm

When I moved to Pittsburgh the former Shadyside Theater was home to The Balcony, a live music venue and high end restaurant on the top floor of the building, whether it was located in what was once the actual balcony of the theater I don’t know. The first floor of the building at the time was a small shopping gallery which also housed a small restaurant called Hot Licks. The building is still standing and houses Pottery Barn.

edblank
edblank on January 26, 2011 at 2:53 pm

The Shadyside Theater had no balcony. The Balcony restaurant, as it was called, was named for the fact it was upstairs. It did, in fact, occupy the area formerly used for the theater’s projection booth plus the (former)air space over the smallish lobby and the back several rows of seats.

edblank
edblank on January 26, 2011 at 2:55 pm

For the record, nothing about the floor plan of the theater changed after it ceased being a late-run neighborhood house and started being a first-run art house. The seats were replaced, I seem to recall, but the structure and layout were the same.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on July 21, 2012 at 8:34 am

Renovations described in this 1964 trade report: Boxoffice

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