Virginia Theatre

38 Centre Avenue NW,
Roanoke, VA 24016

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The Virginia Theatre was open in 1935 with seating listed at 530. Initially operated by Lichtman Theatre and later by Durkee Theatres until it closed in the late-1960’s. The Virginia Theatre catered to African Americans. The theatre has been demolished since its closing.

Contributed by Chuck

Recent comments (view all 1 comments)

lackey
lackey on July 15, 2012 at 4:05 pm

Yes I remember this theater and standing in front of it and looking it over on the outside. It was ONLY for African American patrons. The entrance may have been on Henry Street. The Academy of Music, The American, The Rialto, The Jefferson, The Grandin, The Lee and The Park did not allow African American patrons back then. The Roanoke did but only on Kirk Ave next to the American Theater stage entrance but our African American patrons had to climb many steps way up to the second balcony which was steep and you almost looked down at your shoes to see the movie or the stage show. That was nuts and finally in 1963 or 64 ALL theaters opened their main entrances to ALL people who bought a ticket, red, yellow, black or white. And the funny thing was within a week or so, it seemed it had always been that way.

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