Tower Theater

19 S. 69th Street,
Upper Darby, PA 19082

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1930 image courtesy of Joseph Pultrone.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened on October 1, 1928 as a movie and vaudeville showplace, the Tower Theater was reborn in the 1970’s as a premier venue for concerts.

Recent comments (view all 122 comments)

gd14lawn on March 23, 2011 at 8:59 pm

I went to three of the Furthur shows at the Tower this past weekend. It was great to see this theatre still in use and the sound was great. It was a little sad to see some of the damage done to the theatre over the years. There are three archways on each side of the auditorium that seem to have had a backlit decoration which is gone, the openings are filled with plywood. Big portions of the plaster decoration have been removed on both sides and much of what made this an atmospheric is gone. It looks as though the movie screen may have been moved forward of the proscenium at one time and so the remnants of the curtains are in front of the proscenium opening. They are ragged and dirty. There were about 35 lights representing stars in the ceiling which were on Friday and Saturday, but not turned on for Sunday. The lobbies on both floors are in good condition with the decor intact. The seats are newer and in good condition.

While I would love to see the auditorium fully restored, that will probably not happen in the neighborhood where the Tower is located. I am glad to see it successful as a rock hall which keeps it in use and safe from destruction and I think it anchors the neighborhood.

HowardBHaas on May 4, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Today’s Philadelphia Inquirer article states that Ray Murray and Clair Brown began offering a repertory film program at the Tower in the summer of 1981. A few months later they converted the Theater of Living Arts on South St in Phila. to a repertory movie house.

HowardBHaas on May 4, 2011 at 1:16 pm

oops. that’s Claire Brown.

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 3, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Who owned the Tower Theatre before William Goldman Theatres?

HowardBHaas on November 3, 2011 at 4:37 pm

The 4th Q 2008 Marquee of THSA states the “Freihofer-Stamper Theatres' Tower was constructed….”

Michael R. Rambo Jr.
Michael R. Rambo Jr. on November 3, 2011 at 4:41 pm

I have a old Philadelphia Inquirer movie theatre ad from June 1943 that has the Terminal Theatre as a William Goldman Theatre, and the Tower Theatre and 69th Street Theatre as a Stanley Warner Theatre. I would have to assume that in the early 1950’s Stanley Warner and William Goldman swapped the Terminal Theatre and the Tower Theatre

edison on March 17, 2012 at 9:21 pm

I lived in Philadelphia from 1987 to 1996 and got to see some fine live performances at some great venues (The Keswick, TLA, The Tower). I only attended one show at The Tower and I wish I had gone more often. What a great theater. I saw Frank Zappa play there on Valentines Day 1988 and it sounded incredible.

FJP on August 18, 2012 at 6:50 am

saw many shows and some movies at the Tower starting in the 70’s. Went back last year for two shows (now live 2 hours away). Hope to add more remember many great nights there. Love the “Tower Theater Midnight Sun Memories” group. Mott, Bruce Bowie

rivest266 on May 31, 2014 at 11:33 am

no mention of its grand opening in the amusements section of the Inquirer of October 1st, 1928 at

DavidZornig on February 7, 2015 at 6:24 pm

June 14, 1972 photo added to Photo’s Section of first concert at the Tower. Dave Mason & Buzzy Linhart.

Photo via 11/20/14 link below, though the photo date is from Wikipedia. Copy & Paste to view article.

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