King Theatre

5325 Chene Street,
Detroit, MI 48211

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The Fredro Theatre was opened in 1913. It seated 340. Around 1939 it was renamed King Theatre. In the 1950 edition of Film Daily Yearbook, the 400-seat King Theatre is listed at 5317 Chene Street. The building is still standing, vacant and in very bad condition. Sometime after closing as a movie theatre it was a church.

Contributed by chris1982

Recent comments (view all 2 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 10, 2014 at 12:21 pm

This house has the same address as the Tedro Theatre already listed. Our page says the Tedro closed after one year. The information probably comes from this page at Water Winter Wonderland.

I don’t know if the name Tedro was just a mistake, or if the house did operate under that name in 1922 and later was renamed Fredro, but that doesn’t seem very likely. A guidebook to Detroit published in 1916 mentions a Fredro Theatre, then located at the corner of Chene and Kirby Streets. What seems most likely is that the house was always the Fredro Theatre, both before and after it moved down the block. The neighborhood was predominantly Polish, and the guidebook says that the theater served a Polish audience. Fredro is a Polish surname. Tedro (or Teddro) is also a surname, but, as near as I can determine, it is of Estonian origin.

In any case the name Fredro Theatre appears in multiple FDY’s, and is mentioned in the trade papers at least twice, so that is certainly the name it should be listed under. I’ve found no other sources giving the name Tedro Theatre.

I wouldn’t know what to do about the duplicate listing in this case, as the Tedro page is earlier but this one has accurate information.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 11, 2014 at 12:01 pm

It looks like the Fredro Theatre was renamed the King Theatre sometime in 1939. A 400-seat Fredro Theatre is one of five houses listed on Chene Street in the 1939 FDY, and in 1940 a 400-seat King Theatre is listed but the Fredro isn’t. The other four theaters on Chene Street were unchanged from 1939 to 1940.

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