Downtown Theatre

102 James Street N,
Hamilton, ON LR8

Unfavorite 1 person favorited this theater

Downtown Theatre

The Grand Opera House was opened in 1880 with 1,200 seats.. It later became a movie theatre and was renamed Grand Theatre. In 1935 it was re-named Granada Theatre. In 1954 it was remodeled and renamed Downtown Theatre. It was closed and demolished in 1961.

Contributed by Chad Irish

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

hamiltonmark on November 10, 2004 at 7:47 pm

The Granada theatre opened in 1880 as the Grand Opera House in 1880 with 1200 seats. When a screen was added the name was changed to the Grand theatre. in 1935, the name was change to the Granada and again changed in 1954 to the Downtown. in 1961, it was torn down. The grand piano was saved and is now on display at Hamilton Place. The Tivoli theatre (Posted by Chad I.) was and still is located next door at 108 James Street North in Hamilton and the Granad was 102 James Street North.

mortonbg on March 5, 2008 at 2:01 pm

Here is the listing from the Julius Chan Guide (1902) about this theatre.

HAMILTON Pop., 65,000. Grand
Opera House. C. J. Whitney and A. J.
Small, lessees and mgrs. A. R. Loudon,
local representative. S. c., 1,144. Ilium.,
elec. no direct, 104 alt. E. Lavis, stage
carp. Width proscenium opening, 30 ft.
Height, 27 ft. Depth, footlights to back
wall, 36 ft. Dist. curtain line to foot-
lights, 2 ft. Dist. bet. side walls, 55 ft.
Dist. bet. fly girders, 46 ft. Stage to fly
gallery, 23 ft. Stage to rigging loft, 6V
ft. No grooves. Depth under stage, 8
ft. 4 traps, i bridge, in 3 sections, locat-
ed back of 4. Scene room. Theatre on
ground floor. I. A. Lomas, leader of or-
chestra. 7 in orchestra. Printing re-
quired, 12 stands, 60 3-sheets, 400 lithos,
heralds, etc. Dates read, Grand Opera
House. Culhane Bill-Posting Co.

Newspapers “Spectator,” daily, even-
ing, Mr. Mitchell. “Herald,” daily, even-
ing, Mr. Pasmore. “Times,” daily, even-
ing, Mr. Davis.

Hotels St. Nicholas, $1.25 and $i.
Royal, $2. Commercial, $i. New Wal-
dorff, $1.50.

Railroads G. T. R., C. E. Morgan,
agt. Can. Pac., W. J. Grant, agt. Cana-
dian Transfer Co.

mortonbg on March 5, 2008 at 2:08 pm

There is also an exterior photo of the Grand Theatre and its neighbor the Tivoli Theatre from 1923 at this site here

Picture is the black and white one second down

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 12, 2009 at 1:10 am

The remodeling of the Granada Theatre and its reopening as the Downtown Theatre was the subject of an article in Boxoffice Magazine, April 2, 1955. The limited-budget project, done in-house by the Famous Players circuit, included the removal of much of the Granada’s old decoration, but (unfortunately) not the columns supporting the ancient balcony. A number of the Downtown’s 853 new seats must have been virtually unusable due to these columns interfering with their view of the new CinemaScope screen.

A few before-and-after photos illustrated the Boxoffice article.

mortonbg on November 15, 2009 at 9:30 am

Thanks for this Joe. There were pictures of the interior that I had never seen before.

Gord on August 27, 2011 at 8:24 am

I’m a former Dowontown Theatre employee (March, 1957/January, 1958) and have many fond memories of the place from both when I worked there and even more, in its previous incarnation as the Granada Theatre. I was living in Toronto at the time the Downtown was being demolished but had returned on that particular Saturday to visit my folks. Walking from the old CN Station up James Street I came upon the destruction in progress but managed to save the last posted showtimes for the last program the theatre played. Regretfully, it has since gotten lost in the mists of times. But there are memories, lots nad lots of very warm memories. I hate the look of that awful strip mall that replaced the theatre and the hotel adjacent to it and now also hate the look of what is left of the Tivoli Theatre. It’s all very sad, very sad indeed!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 27, 2012 at 6:55 pm

Linkrot repair: The two-page, 1955 Boxoffice article about the remodeling of the Granada into the Downtown Theatre now begins at this link.

Gord on November 27, 2012 at 8:25 pm

Thank you Joe. It has been a long, long time since I saw a Granada Theatre marquee. So very much appreciative of the artcle from 1955.

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