East Sixth Street,
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Dubinsky Brother’s opened their Yale Theatre in the late-1910’s. A rather large theatre for a medium size town, the Yale had two seperate entrances.
The main entrance was on the 200 block of East Sixth Street. Tapestry brick, an ornate box office, a flashy upright sign, and a large “box” marquee complimented this facade.
The Sixth Street lobby was of French character with fancy plaster alcoves, fine statuary, and decorative ceiling panels. The mosaic tile floor of this chamber was built with a gradual rake to form a ramp which climbed up to a frosted glass bridge that crossed high over an alley in order to gain entry into the auditorium standee. A colorful concession stand was also located in the standee area.
The other entrance was on East Fifth Street, off Grand, with it’s own boxoffice and marquee. This entrance contained a small, functional lobby with staircases that led to the upstairs standee/concession area.
Located above ground level shops was a lovely, wide auditorium, and a heavily draped stage. In order to defeat keystoning problems the projection booth was installed at the base of the steeply pitched balcony (a design later used in the Roxy in New York City).
Originally the Yale showcased first run silent movies and Dubinsky Vaudeville. After talking pictures were introduced in the late ‘20s vaude was dropped.
During the early 30’s the Yale staged burlesque with a five member pit orchestra. Bump and grind acts sold tickets, but local clergy protest and frequent police raids put a quick end to strip-tease acts.
After that bawdy period, the Yale eventually was absorbed by Griffith Bros. and settled down to became just another double feature picture house.
After becoming quite run down and shabby, the Yale closed in late 50’s. In the spring of ‘65 the auditorium and Fifth/Grand lobby structure were razed to make way for a drive in bank facility.
Today the Sixth Street lobby still stands, but because of its sloped floor it was never successfully used for any other purpose other than a theatre lobby.
The below link is still under construction, but in the near future will contain vintage images of the Yale Theatre.
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