Criterion Theater

W. Mohawk Street and Pearl Street,
Buffalo, NY 14202

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STAR (CRITERION) Theatre; Buffalo, New York.

The Star Theater was opened December 24, 1888. A 2/6 WurliTzer Theatre Pipe Organ, Opus 342, was shipped from North Tonawanda, New York on April 20, 1920. Buffalo is only 14 miles away so it should have arrived at the theater the same day. What happened to the organ after that is unknown.

It was renamed Criterion Theater on September 5, 1920 and was closed and demolished in 1924.

Contributed by Ret. AKC(NAC) Bob Jensen

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

roberttoplin on December 21, 2007 at 8:17 pm

The Criterion used to be the Star Theater. Located at the corner of W. Mohawk & Pearl Streets, the Star, designed by W.W. Carlin, opened Dec.24,1888 with 1,425 seats. It became the Criterion Dec.3,1923 and was razed June 22,1924.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 23, 2010 at 3:00 am

Here is a history of the Star Theatre as a legitimate house, from 1888 to 1919. It only mentions briefly that it then became a movie house called the Criterion.

The Art Institute of Chicago provides this drawing, captioned “Levi Theatre, for Emanuel Levi, Buffalo, N.Y.” The drawing might be by the theater’s architect, William Worth Carlin. The building was designed in the Romanesque Revival style.

markhn on November 20, 2015 at 5:17 am

The Criterion opened on Sunday September 5, 1920 with a sneak preview of Demille’s “Something To Think About” starring Gloria Swanson.

markhn on November 20, 2015 at 5:20 am

How the Criterion opened.

markhn on November 20, 2015 at 5:24 am

An article about the Criterion’s planned opening and details about it’s management and upgrading.

markhn on November 20, 2015 at 5:28 am

An article giving the opening date as Sunday, September 5, 1920.’s%22

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