Broadway Theatre

1681 Broadway,
New York, NY 10019

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Showing 1 - 25 of 77 comments

edlambert on July 27, 2014 at 6:17 pm

Does anyone know the size of the screen installed at the Broadway for the premiere of “This Is Cinerama”?

Tinseltoes on October 24, 2013 at 10:37 am

Ed, you have very keen eyesight. I’d never compared the two images. But it turns out that the show was so successful that it was held over for a second week, with Barto & Mann replacing comedian Al Trahan. I guess that he had a conflicting engagement. I’m posting an ad in the Photos Section.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 23, 2013 at 12:44 pm

Coincidentally, this pic, also from October, 1931, and posted back in May of 2012, shows the marquee advertising what appears to be essentially the same bill. Barto & Mann seem to be listed on the marquee in place of Al Trahan?

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on October 23, 2013 at 12:28 pm

Wow… 1931! I wonder how big that “giant” television screen was – not to mention how grainy or fuzzy the image was, at that size!

Tinseltoes on October 23, 2013 at 11:31 am

Long before introducing Cinerama to the world, the Broadway Theatre presented the first stage show incorporating projection television. I’ve posted an ad in the Photos Section.

AlAlvarez on May 22, 2012 at 10:25 am

Note the CINE ROMA verticle sign at the far near corner of the marquee. This name and concept moved around between the Ambassador, Piccadilly and Broadway in the late thirties.

AlAlvarez on January 2, 2012 at 8:31 pm

“Steamboat Willie” opened at this Colony. The 79th Street was not named Colony until 1937.

jeffg718 on January 2, 2012 at 8:10 pm

I’ve found some websites that say that “Steamboat Willie” premiered at the Broadway Theatre in 1928 when it was the Colony and other websites that say it premiered at the 79th Street Theatre which later was renamed the Colony. I am curious to know which is correct.

robboehm on September 19, 2011 at 8:50 am

In addition to the renovations mentioned in the opening the Broadway “suffered” a major modification when Candide played there. Basically it was converted to an arena with a large portion of the orchestra seating replaced by the stage.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on April 11, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Great photos on that site! Thanks for sharing, CWalczak! I love the surreptitious shots of the screen during the film… Really gives an idea as to how overwhelming the image must have been, particularly to those who had until that time been used to standard Academy ratio for so long!

CSWalczak on April 11, 2011 at 2:22 pm

The page for the Broadway Theatre in Roland Lataille’s database of Cinerama theaters has a picture of the ground floor booths for Cinerama at the Broadway. Considering that the center booth shows only a single projection port, my guess would be that the high booth was used for the prologue. See

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on April 11, 2011 at 1:30 pm

Back on Feb 19, 2010, Ret. AKC(NAC) Bob Jensen answered a question regarding Cinerama presentation that I had posed 4 years earlier. I would now like to take this opportunity, more than a year AFTER that response, to say “Many thanks, Sir!”

And re-register for notifications on this page, while I’m at it.

Tinseltoes on April 11, 2011 at 12:29 pm

Sixty-four years ago tonight, Charles Chaplin’s “Monsieur Verdoux” opened its world premiere engagement at the Broadway Theatre. The opening night performance was by invitation only, with continuous performances at “popular prices” starting the next day. Tickets could also be purchased in advance for the Broadway’s 250-seat mezzanine section for $1.80 during the day and $2.50 at night. The B&W United Artists release was a radical departure for Chaplin, who discarded his traditional baggypants character to portray a contemporary Bluebeard who marries and murders for money. Critics and public were generally hostile to the “black comedy,” which became Chaplin’s first financial failure.

Brad Smith
Brad Smith on February 11, 2011 at 11:29 pm

This photograph of the B.S. Moss Broadway Theatre was taken in 1931 by George Mann of the comedy dance team, Barto and Mann.

Tinseltoes on October 23, 2010 at 9:58 am

Tonight (10/23) will mark the 69th anniversary of the gala world premiere of Walt Disney’s “Dumbo” at the Broadway Theatre. Public performances started the next day at 9:30 am, with prices starting at 35 cents until 1pm. Children’s tickets were 25 cents at all times. The Broadway Theatre had previously enjoyed a long run with Disney’s “Fantasia” as a reserved-seat roadshow. For “Dumbo,” mezzaine seats could be reserved at a slight additional charge. Both films were distributed by RKO Radio.

Tinseltoes on September 5, 2010 at 11:20 am

On this day in 1926, “One Minute to Play,” starring football’s great Red Grange in his acting debut, started its world premiere engagement at the B.S. Moss Colony Theatre, with support from a stage presentation topped by Roger Wolfe Kahn and His Grange Collegians' Band. On opening day only, Red Grange also appeared in person on stage at every performance. The movie was released by FBO, headed by Joseph P. Kennedy, father of a future President of the USA.

Bway on August 28, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Here’s the link:

View link

Bway on August 28, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Here’s a very early photo of the Colony Theater

AlAlvarez on July 6, 2010 at 10:15 am

“Fantasia”, longest run in the history of talking pictures:

View link

Tinseltoes on June 15, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Neat ad, Al, but posted at the wrong listing. It’s for the Colony on the Upper East Side aka 79th Street Theatre: /theaters/1402/

HowardBHaas on May 27, 2010 at 9:48 pm

Interior & exterior photos, including historic ones:

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on February 19, 2010 at 9:59 pm

Ed Solero-

I don’t think your question of Jan 10, 2006 was ever answered.

“for the CINERAMA exhibition, did they use the high projection booth? Or did they build a booth at the rear of the orchestra?”

Here’s the answer, over 4 years later!

They actually built 3 booths at the rear of the orchestra.

This causes me to want to know, did they use the high projection booth for the black and white, standard film, Lowell Thomas Prologue or the Bravo Booth?

Bill Huelbig
Bill Huelbig on February 18, 2010 at 10:53 am

I’m with AGR on this. In 1996 a Dayton, Ohio theater installed Cinerama for what was supposed to be a two-week run. It wound up running for more than three years (weekends only). I realize NYC has more tourist attractions than Dayton, but still … :) And Cinerama still draws crowds in LA whenever it is shown there.

Tinseltoes on February 18, 2010 at 10:40 am

I think that NYC already has more tourist attractions than it can handle, with many going begging. A revival of Cinerama would have a quick death.

AGRoura on February 18, 2010 at 9:05 am

It’s a shame NYC does not have a Cinerama theater like LA and Seattle. It would be a big tourism attraction.