New Colony Theatre
430 High Street,
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Previously operated by: Levine Theatrical Enterprises
Styles: Streamline Moderne
Previous Names: Colony City Auditorium, Colony Theatre
The Colony Theatre, located on High Street, in Portsmouth’s Old Towne, was across the street from the Commodore Theatre. It was opened on March 8, 1926 with Corinne Griffith in “Classified”. It was designed in Art Moderne style. After it closed, it housed a nightclub from the late-1980’s into the early-1990’s.
The former theatre was damaged by a storm in 2000 which destroyed its marquee and façade, but the exterior was afterward repaired (although not restored). The building was ‘For Lease’ in May 2019.
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Recent comments (view all 10 comments)
LEVINE THEATRICAL ENTERPRISES is the chain for this theatre.
Here is a 1952 photo:
This photo is from 1951. The citizens are waiting in line to buy license plates:
That must have been one hell of a storm.
My mom worked at the Colony in Portsmouth, VA back in the mid ‘50’s as a part-time cashier. She said she remembered a wide, sweeping staircase, thick carpeting, a large chandelier, and a lounge with comfortable chairs & fireplace- I can only imagine!
From the 1950s a photo postcard view of the Colony Theatre along with the Commodore which is directly across the street.
CURRENT NAME: NEW COLONY THEATER
PREVIOUS NAME: COLONY THEATER
NUMBER OF SEATS: 267
RELATED WEBSITE (OFFICIAL) www.newcolonytheater.org
I was in the Colony a few times when the initial night club occupied the building in the mid to late 1980’s. The stage was intact and during breaks in the entertainment a movie size screen was sometimes lowered. Music videos were sometimes shown. I can recall seeing Point of No Return by Nu Shooz during one break with giant pairs of shoes racing across the screen.
I recently found a diary from 1935. Someone who worked there. It list shows and even has a piece of a negative. Very interesting.
The Colony Theatre opened on March 8th, 1926. Colony theatre opening 07 Mar 1926, Sun Virginian-Pilot and the Norfolk Landmark (Norfolk, Virginia) Newspapers.com