Bal Theatre

14808 E. 14th Street,
San Leandro, CA 94578

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Showing 1 - 25 of 44 comments

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on June 27, 2012 at 11:28 am

Here is an updated link to the 1946 Boxoffice article about the Bal Theatre.

Mikeyisirish on June 27, 2012 at 10:02 am

A 2010 photo can be seen here.

Corksoaker on July 31, 2011 at 7:26 pm

@davidkaye: Because that’s the name of that neighborhood in San Leandro. (I’m from San Leandro originally, grew up there in the 60’s/70’s)

davidkaye on June 18, 2011 at 2:04 am

Does anybody know why it was named the Bal? Is it Spanish? Was it someone’s last name?

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 15, 2010 at 11:18 pm

The Bal Theatre was designed by architect Vincent G. Raney. An article about it appeared in Boxoffice of September 14, 1946. There are four photos. The article mistakenly palces the Bal in Oakland.

robertcampbell on April 14, 2010 at 7:03 pm

Great News! The grand reopening of the Bal will be on 4/23/10. According to the website calendar, renovations are being done, including the installation of a new curtain. Classic films are scheduled to play, starting with His Girl Friday on the 24th.

kencmcintyre on April 9, 2010 at 7:12 pm

Here is a somewhat vertiginous view of the Bal:

scottfavareille on February 18, 2010 at 12:58 pm

There have been independently made documentaries that have been showing here on Saturdays since November. Status should be changed to “open”. I am curious as to how much of an audience the documentaries are doing.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on November 3, 2009 at 12:20 pm

This is a November 2, 2009 article about the Bal Theater.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on October 21, 2009 at 2:14 pm

Looks like the Bal will be opening on November 14, 2009. Here is their website.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on May 21, 2009 at 9:17 am

Here are some 1986 photos:




kencmcintyre on March 20, 2009 at 8:32 pm

Here is a January 1961 ad from the Hayward Review:

theda323 on March 17, 2009 at 4:31 pm

I hope they start showing cool B Movies at the Bal with the new owners.. San leandro is a gold mine for cool :)

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on February 5, 2009 at 4:50 pm

This document dated January 15, 2009 mentions, “Matter of PLN2008-00049; Conditional Use and Parking Exception; to allow the establishment of a computer repair and service business at 14808 East 14th Street. The Bal Theater would continue to be used. Assessor’s Parcel Number 077E-1593-008-00; Xzault Media Group, D. and G. Dillman (Applicants and Property Owners); SA-1 South Area — 1 District."

I’m not sure what it means by “The Bal Theater would continue to be used”. Continue to be used for what, a computer repair business?

TheatreGeek on February 5, 2009 at 4:21 pm

ok thank you, i see that you have taken recent shots of the theatre
have you been informed on what type of business is going to be inside of there?

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on February 5, 2009 at 6:33 am

I’d like to help you Theatre_Geek but I don’t have any information about the Bal Theater. Maybe someone else here can help you.

TheatreGeek on February 4, 2009 at 10:20 pm

Hey Lost Memory I am the son of the man who has purchased the theater i was interested in what your history is with the theater,because i am very much interested in finding out as much as i can about the building, so if you can email me it would be great my email is
Thank you

TheatreGeek on November 24, 2008 at 10:58 am

I have also recently seen that there is now a Sold sign posted in one of the windows, i have also seen a few people walking in and out of the theatre from time to time. So is there any news on who has now purchased the Bal Theatre?

AkumaX on November 18, 2008 at 8:29 am

There is now a Sold sign in the window. Wonder who bought it this time.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on June 22, 2008 at 1:11 pm

This is a nice 2008 photo.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 16, 2008 at 2:46 pm

Did the name originate with the district or with the theatre? The San Leandro Times says the Bal Districts are of mostly post-WWII development. It’s easier to tell what came first in Fresno’s Tower District, for example, since the neighborhood is considerably older than the theatre from which it eventually got its current name.

scottfavareille on April 16, 2008 at 11:57 am

The neighborhood surrounding the theater is called the Bal neighborhood.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 15, 2008 at 4:47 pm

Here is an article with several photos of the Bal, including some interior shots.

I haven’t been able to find how the theatre got its name, but what I have found is an online excerpt from a book called “Got a Revolution” which reveals that The Bal’s owner, Renny Lamarre, was also the manager of a young musician named Marty Buchwald and, not liking that surname, changed it to Balin, taking the first syllable from his Bal Theatre. Marty Balin then went on to fame as a member of the San Francisco band Jefferson Airplane.

Purely as speculation, I wonder if the theatre’s name was chosen because bal is the French word for ball, as in fancy-pants dance?

DonLewis on April 15, 2008 at 6:56 am

A good view of the Bal Theater in San Leandro taken by SteelePop.