Capri Art Theater

3165 Bailey Avenue,
Buffalo, NY 14215

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Capri Art Theater

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Varsity Theater was opened in 1922. The Capri Art Theater opened in the former Varsity Theater building sometime in the early-1960’s.

In February 2014, plans were announced to restore the theatre, to be used for live performances, occasional movies and community events, with a planned re-opening for 2015, possibly returning to the original Varsity name.

Contributed by Ken MC/Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 20 comments)

TivFan on January 20, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Another photo, dated c.1915 (wrong?) shows a panoramic view of Main Street from the D.S. Morgan building. The Bijou is identical as shown in the 1910 post card. This shot is at

TivFan on January 20, 2013 at 4:47 pm

Another shot is a Library of Congress photo at (you probably have to do a search on the site). This panoramic photo of Shelton Square is dated c.1911 and shows the Bijou Dream with an added vertical sign. The sign is not shown complete, but may say: FLEISHM(an’s?). You cannot see the Bijou Dream sign on the Main Street facade, but the 5 cent sign can be seen, to the right, on the side of the building (on North Division).

TivFan on January 20, 2013 at 5:16 pm

That’s all I’ve found on the Bijou, so far. There is no information on the Buffalo history sites I’ve seen.
I’m stumped on this one: I have a card which shows Main Street, looking north from Seneca Street. A theater can be seen on the block between Swan and Seneca Streets, just south of the Ellicott Building. The name is not visible, but there is a large sign, high on the facade, which says: VAUDEVILLE. I’ve identified my other Buffalo cards, even the Shea’s Garden Theatre entrance beside the D.S. Morgan building. (sorry about the many, short comments but my page keeps expiring, so I gotta make it fast…) Thanks.

TivFan on January 21, 2013 at 5:19 am

Stumped no more. Looking at the Main Street theaters, the one north of Seneca Street is the Academy Theatre. It was formerly the Academy of Music.

TivFan on January 21, 2013 at 5:35 am

Where did the postcard picture go? It was there this morning. Does anyone have a direct link to the Don Lewis postcard showing the Palace (and the building that replaced the Bijou)? There a few other Buffalo sites that have photos of the Palace Theatre and Shelton Square. It is amazing how many theaters there were in Buffalo during the 1930’s-40’s. If you ever have the time, see Shea’s Buffalo Theatre. It is astounding! It is the grandest, most extravagent theatre I’ve ever seen. It’s been a while since I’ve been there…I saw “North By Northwest” there in 1996. Radio City Music Hall is fantastic, but for sheer opulence, see Shea’s.

TivFan on January 21, 2013 at 6:11 am

More research…the Garden Theatre IS beside the D. S. Morgan building…well, whatta ya know. I saw a photo on the Library of Congress website.

Don Lewis
Don Lewis on January 21, 2013 at 6:09 pm

Agreeing with Joe about my postcard image of the Palace Theatre and the Capri Art, I have pulled it.

TivFan on January 31, 2013 at 2:56 pm

The postcard/photo showing the white building which replaced the Bijou Dream building, can be seen at by clicking on “Iriquois Hotel” in the list. This shot also shows the Strand Theatre in the middle of the block, just down from the Iriquois Hotel. It also shows the Palace Theatre on the next block. I have seen another photo of the Bijou which also shows the Strand as the Golden Palace, but I can’t remember where…I’ll let you know.

TivFan on February 6, 2013 at 12:14 pm

Error!! A correction to my Jan. 27/8:47 comment. In looking at the photographs again, it looks as though the “Fleishman’s” sign is on the building on the corner opposite the Bijou Dream. So the Bijou Dream is just called the Bijou Dream. When I get all the photos sorted out, I should add the Bijou Dream to the Buffalo theaters list. This (and other) photos of Buffalo can be seen at the Library of Congress site. There are over 2300 images of Buffalo here and tons of other great history.

LouB on March 3, 2014 at 11:09 pm


This link deals with a grant the theater has recieved.

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