31-33 Chenango Street,
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Opened as the Columbia Theatre on 11th October 1892 with “Fadette”. It was soon renamed Stone Opera House. The theatre was designed by architects Sanford O. Lacey and E.H. Bartoo, under the supervision of architect Isaac G. Perry. It was designed in what has been described as a Richardsonian Romanesque style. Seating is located on three levels, orchestra and horseshoe-shaped balconies.
Over the years it was used for drama, musical comedy, opera, vaudeville, burlesque and minstrel shows. Stars such as Richard Mansfield, Mrs Fiske, Sarah Bernhardt, Henry Irving, Maude Adams, Ethel and John Barrymore, Eddie Foy, George M. Cohen and Edward G. Robinson trod the boards here.
From September 1, 1930 it became a full time movie theatre known as the Riviera Theatre with Norma Shearer in “Let Us Be Gay”. The Riviera Theatre was closed in 1978.
The marquee was removed, but the first-floor store fronts were restored in the mid-1980’s. In 1987 there were plans put forward to convert the theatre into two 300 seat theatres within the building.
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