Standard Theater

1124 South Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19147

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Built in 1889 as a church. It was converted into the Gayety Theater by architects Rowe & Dagit. Later renamed Gibson’s Standard Theater, it was closed in 1935, but later reopened after alterations had been carried out by architect Angus S. Wade. Closed again in 1954 when it suffered hurricane damage, it was demolished soon after.

The former location is now a vacant lot. There is a historical marker at the location which may refer to this theater.

Contributed by Ken McIntyre, Lost Memory

Recent comments (view all 10 comments)

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on May 9, 2009 at 8:33 pm

I think the other theater related website is giving some incorrect information about this theater. The information on the PAB website indicates that this building was originally a church. It was converted to a 1500 seat theater by architects Rowe & Dagit. Additional alterations were made later by architect Angus S. Wade. A demolition date of “after 1954” is given. If this theater did close in 1935, it must have opened again. The Standard Theater is still listed in the 1955 Film Daily Yearbook with 1325 seats. The Standard Theater was probably demolished in the 1950s. The information above needs to be updated.

kencmcintyre on May 9, 2009 at 8:39 pm

The Temple University site has some photos of damage to the theater after Hurricane Hazel, around 1954. If you look at the Theater of the Living Arts page, I posted the Standard photos a couple of years ago.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on May 9, 2009 at 8:43 pm

Maybe it was demolished because of the hurricane damage. If you can get that digital diamond link to work again, you could post it here.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on May 9, 2009 at 8:51 pm

Thanks. The hurricane must have done alot of damage to this building. That is probably the reason that the PAB site gives the demolition year of after 1954.

HowardBHaas on May 12, 2009 at 4:09 am

1927 photo states Broad & Lombard, which is a few blocks away from 1124 South St.

kencmcintyre on May 12, 2009 at 4:17 am

We saw that, but there is a sign on the theater that says 11th and South.

Lost Memory
Lost Memory on May 12, 2009 at 4:26 am

The Philly History site might be giving the wrong location. Looking at the 1927 photo, the sign on the left of the building reads in part “Standard Theatre South Street & 12th, High Class Vaudeville”.

ilcorago on July 17, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Some of confusion is that there were two theatres owned by John T Gibson, which used his name here in Philly. One was the Standard at 1124 South, and one was the Dunbar, which he renamed the Gibson at Lombard and Broad. The 1924 picture, which Ken posted, is of the Dunbar/Gibson on Broad St. Both theatres are an important part of Philadelphia black history.

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