Ritz Theater

46 Washington Avenue,
Carteret, NJ 07008

Unfavorite 3 people favorited this theater

Ritz main entrance

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Ritz Theater was opened on September 1, 1927, and was designed by local architect John Gliva. It was closed on January 31, 1965. Since closing the building has been in use as a clothing factory and later as a bakery. It is vacant in 2014.

Contributed by tc

Recent comments (view all 53 comments)

markp
markp on October 23, 2014 at 12:48 pm

I’ll see what I can do walterk. Im at the arena 8 am to load in a show. Its at least 8 hrs if not more. And if I get showcall I dont leave at all. We shall see. I drove by last week. The big demo dumpster was gone and nothing happening. All doors were locked. Gonna check again next week.

walterk
walterk on November 20, 2014 at 7:30 pm

According to the Encyclopedia of the American Theatre Organ, the Ritz was equipped with an organ manufactured by the United States Pipe Organ Company, opus 153, size 2/4 with a 3HP blower from Kinetic Engineering Company, #P1142B.

It also gives a date of 1928 although advertisements and media coverage for the opening in 1927 mention the presence of an organ, described by the local newspaper as “ a huge organ powered by electric motors”. The opening night article mentioned the evening opened with an organ solo “The Rosary”. I suspect this was the same organ, and perhaps the paperwork from 1928 reflects an upgrade or some such.

In current news, the Borough of Carteret received $350,000 dollars from Middlesex County earlier this week towards renovating the Ritz as a performing arts venue. I mention it only as a lead into a photo of the Mayor receiving a check that is posted on his Facebook page here. The reason I posted this link is for the ornate plaster work visible, I am pretty sure that is the bottom of the stage left organ loft they are standing in front of, if my memory serves me well after a half century.

markp
markp on November 21, 2014 at 6:06 am

Drove by here just the other day. All quiet. Nothing going on lately.

markp
markp on December 17, 2014 at 3:30 pm

A big thank you to walterk for setting up the visit to the Ritz today. It was something for me to be in the same building my dad worked in all those years ago. I even got to go to the old projection room where he walked and worked. The old place needs a lot of work, but the people in charge have a vision and now lets hope the $$$$$ start rolling in.

walterk
walterk on December 17, 2014 at 8:48 pm

Glad you enjoyed the day markp, I did too. It was great to finally meet you, and I think we both enjoyed meeting the various folks involved in the renovation project, along with members of the borough’s Historical Committee. I’ll be uploading a few pictures I took in the next few days, also that 1947 photo of your dad with Mr. Spewak in the Ritz projection room. I’ll post more when I upload, but yes, it needs a whole lot of work especially with plaster restoration. I’m confident the folks in charge will meet their goal of reopening the Ritz in 2017, I’m really looking forward to watching this project progress. I wish I lived a little closer so I could be more involved.

walterk
walterk on December 20, 2014 at 11:49 am

Just uploaded a couple new pictures, one from our visit to the building earlier this week, the other of longtime house projectionist Joe Pusillo with Ritz owner Maurice Spewak in the booth. I’ll post more pictures of our afternoon at the Ritz soon.

markp
markp on December 20, 2014 at 1:31 pm

Thanks for that walterk. It was my pleasure to supply the photo and sharing it with you and the group. Also the above header should now also include “renovating” “restoring”

markp
markp on December 20, 2014 at 6:46 pm

walterk, I spoke to my mom the other day and she did indeed know and graduated with Alice. Small world.

walterk
walterk on December 22, 2014 at 6:10 pm

Just added a few more pictures of the Ritz taken last week, more to come. markp, My Aunt remembers your mother, too. Small world it is.

markp
markp on December 29, 2014 at 7:55 am

walterk, I just found another booth shot of Mr Spewak next to the projectors. Im thinking of bringing it to the historical society to scan. I will ask my wife if our scanner still works and then maybe I can get it out to you. If not then I will bring it to you the next time your in the state.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater