Capri Theatre

148 W. Main Street,
Johnson City, TN 37604

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sonarboy
sonarboy on March 27, 2014 at 2:45 am

This theatre was built for live performance before the advent of sound reinforcement. Great acoustics. The last ‘live’ show ever presented there was April 9, 1981. Produced by Joe ‘Tank’ Leach owner of The Down Home music venue. The show featured Roy Bookbinder, John Hartford and New Grass Revival. I recorded that show on 10" reel to reel tapes. The city lost a great cultural venue that cannot be built today. No foresight to this day.

Matthew Prigge
Matthew Prigge on November 19, 2012 at 9:26 pm

If anyone has any stories about going to/ working at this threatre in its adult days, I would love to hear them. I am chronicling the histories of adult theatres in the US. Please contact me at Thanks!

Ripshin
Ripshin on March 25, 2012 at 7:14 pm

East TN was a “petrie dish” for urban renewal in the 70s. Just about EVERY small town was destroyed by the “experiment” – massive loss of significant architecture. Very sad.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 25, 2012 at 1:30 pm

A De Luxe Theatre at Johnson City is listed in the 1922 edition of Julius Cahn’s guide. The Deluxe Theatre placed a courtesy ad in the 1923 edition of The Buffalo, the senior class yearbook of Milligan College in Johnson City. A 2007 book called Fiddlin' Charlie Bowman, by Bob L. Cox, says that Mr. Bowman appeared at the Deluxe Theatre in Johnson City in the spring of 1924, and adds that the “…stately entertainment center had been built just four years previously….” It’s quite possible that the Deluxe opened in 1920, and it was certainly open by 1922.

Ripshin
Ripshin on March 30, 2009 at 8:21 am

No, it was demolished to make way for the BUS station. People were pushing for it to be torn down, due to its final years as a porn house. The Presbyterian church across the street was probably glad to see it go, although I attended church there at the time, and was sick to see that wonderful old building come down.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on February 21, 2009 at 1:59 am

The Three Stooges appeared at the Tennessee Theater in October of 1947. An ad can be seen on this site.

BannerJohn1954
BannerJohn1954 on December 9, 2007 at 10:42 pm

I saw a James Bond film there,the one with Lazenby. I remember it being BIG,and ornate. I sat in the balcony. It was bulldozed to make way for the Johnson City Press building.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on February 24, 2007 at 4:09 pm

I found some info on the Capri Theater.

The Capri opened in 1924 as the 1250 seat Deluxe Theater. The name changed to Capital Theater, Tennessee Theater, and finally to the Capri Theater. The Capri Theater was demolished in 1985. Above info comes from this website.