Loew's 83rd Street Quad

2309 Broadway,
New York, NY 10024

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The 83rd Street Theatre was opened in September 1921. It was converted into a triple screen theatre in 1976, then became a quad in 1978.

It was closed in May 1985 and was demolished.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 28 comments)

AlAlvarez
AlAlvarez on December 15, 2008 at 9:58 am

This theatre closed in May 1985 and not 1984 as stated in previous posts.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on December 10, 2009 at 8:40 am

Great picture AlAlvarez,F—– the taxes!!!Great history.

dave-bronx™
dave-bronx™ on December 10, 2009 at 9:09 am

In the photo posted by Al, you can see that the lot next to the Quad has been cleared for construction of the 84th sixplex.

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on December 10, 2009 at 10:53 am

Thanks dave-bronx!

bistis6
bistis6 on February 28, 2010 at 7:59 am

I was the last assistant manager at this theatre, splitting my time between the 83rd and the newly built 84th next door. The theatre seemed to know it was in it’s last days, as it seemingly just started to deteriorate on it’s own. A big patch of the ceiling plaster fell during a matinee in house 3 (lower level left), pipes started leaking, a strange smell developed, etc.

The employees had two locker room areas. The men were upstairs off the men’s room and the women were behind the screen in house 4 (lower right lobby). I had never gone back there. One day, during the final week of operation, I decided to explore and, armed with nothing more than my standard-issue Loew’s employee flashlight, I ventured behind the screen, curious as to what was actually back there.

Needless to say, I was floored. Bear in mind that I had started as an usher at this theatre in ‘84, fresh off the bus from KY, and had no idea what it’s past had been. I can indeed vouch that the boxes were gone but their structural imprints were still still visible. The stage, proscenium, and fly system were also intact. Don’t remember the piano, though. I went on to explore the dressing room floors. There was little to no light in this area, I was so scared! LOL They were pretty much empty, barely even being used for storage. (I found an old office desk in one of the rooms on the second floor, which eventually make its way back to my apartment on 85th St.)

The theatre remained open for the first couple of weeks after the 84th opened. We were supposed to close on a Thursday, but for some reason a decision was made to stay open through the weekend. I was told in an off-hand manner, but nobody bothered to tell the operator! I had no idea that he was a no-show until one of the six people who had showed up for a matinee of GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN came out to inquire…20 minutes after the movie should have started.

Anyway, I was there for the last day and I don’t remember a thing about it. The doors were locked and I continued on at the 84th, which had a very bumpy first several weeks due to to all sorts of electrical glitches.

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on March 16, 2010 at 1:06 pm

Interesting ad from Boxoffice in November 1939:
http://tinyurl.com/ybxglfb

TLSLOEWS
TLSLOEWS on March 16, 2010 at 2:05 pm

Thanks ken mc,very cool ventage stuff!!

bistis6
bistis6 on March 21, 2010 at 11:20 am

Great find, Ken, thanks!

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on June 17, 2012 at 7:59 am

Here’s the auditorium featured in a 1939 trade ad for foam sponge seating. The marquee sketch is fantasy: boxofficemagazine

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