351 East Sixth Street,
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The Chico Enterprise-Record says that Albert Mitchell and his family fashioned the Pageant Theatre out of an old paint store in 1977. It was created as a venue for foreign and American films. They also offered live music performances and children’s acting classes.
In 1980 Tim Guista and Roger Montalbano took over the Pageant Theatre. After showing mainstream moves for six months they began to present art and foreign films, which previously weren’t available in Chico. The big change happened after the showing of “Ordinary People”, which put them on their feet, financially.
Since this is the only art theater in the area, this policy has given them a loyal and regular following. Articles from the Enterprise-Record note that the Pageant Theatre sometimes plays independent films that are independent in the true sense of the word. Not Hollywood derived independent films, but films made by Chico production companies with local casts and crews.
Another attraction, which celebrated its fifth year in February of 2011 is the Found Footage Festival. In the Festival Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett provide narration to a compilation of hilarious, quirky and sometimes prosaic videos, which they have discovered.
Comfy touches such as the two couches in the front row of the 100-seat theater add to the Pageant’s charm and give it an alternative to the local Cinemark. Owner Guista noted that there is only room for one projector so there is always an intermission.
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