Loew's Rochester Theater

130 S. Clinton Avenue,
Rochester, NY 14604

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Loew's Rochester Theater, Rochester, NY - 1931

Viewing: Photo | Street View

The Rochester Theater opened on November 2, 1927 as part of the Schine’s chain, but soon became part of the Loew’s Inc. empire. With 3,581 seats it was advertised as the largest theater in America between New York and Chicago. The auditorium featured bronze light fixtures, murals, leather upholstery for the box seats, and an enormous Marr & Colton organ.

The Loew’s Rochester Theater was to be renovated as part of a downtown redevelopment, but a local firm bought it and demolished it in 1964 to make way for their new headquarters.

Contributed by Carl

Recent comments (view all 41 comments)

HenrySchmidt on March 16, 2011 at 4:22 pm

The “local firm” that bought the Loew’s Rochester site, and erected their world headquarters thereon, was Xerox! The Xerox Tower now stands where I saw “Ivanhoe” back in the early ‘60s when I was in college. The theater was very ornate, as I dimly recall, with a red and gold scheme; it was a center-aisle design, less popular than the more traditional center-section, side-aisle plan. As for its being “the ugliest” and “most unfortunate looking,” don’t you wish we had it back??? I know I do!! (Somehow, Xerox just ain’t got the ol’ magic for me….)

HenrySchmidt on March 19, 2011 at 11:07 am

As Ossie Wieggel’s photos prove, Loew’s Rochester was NOT a center-aisle design. I stand corrected! See http://tinyurl.com/6kcruqj
I must have been thinking of another theater!
tlsloews, copy of what?

martymia2009 on June 18, 2011 at 3:43 pm

I remember walking into the Theatre when I was 12 to see Quo Vadis & my mouth dropped open at the beauty it projected to me opn the inside. Big,beautiful, and a wonderful place to see a Movie but the way downtown Rochester is now it wouldn’t be open for a year!!!!

dhroc on August 22, 2011 at 7:14 pm

In the 1930 photo you can see the Unitarian Universalist church in the background. That church is on the same side of Clinton Ave. as Xerox. I’m wondering if it actually was Xerox that is now on the theatre site.

Brad Smith
Brad Smith on May 5, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Click here for an exterior view of the Loew’s Rochester Theatre in 1931 and here for an exterior view in 1932.

HenrySchmidt on May 5, 2012 at 9:39 pm

To the best of my recollection (from my college years at the UofR 1959-63), the Loew’s Rochester was on the same side of S. Clinton Ave. as the later Xerox tower which replaced it, and the U-U Church, IOW, the east side (if I have my directions right).

jasen on February 10, 2013 at 3:04 pm

I recall seeing “Rock Around the Clock” in 1956 at the Lowe’s. The movie caused a small riot in the theater when Bill Haley and his group playing the movie’s theme song by the same name. Rochester police were called to bring the audience into control.

DavidZornig on October 6, 2013 at 8:48 pm

FYI, there are some interior photos of the Lowe’s on a website called www.RochesterSubway.com

Click on “Select Month”, and then “October 2012”, then scroll down.

spectrum on January 3, 2015 at 4:34 pm

Direct link to the interior/exterior photogalleryes mentioned above:




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