Ambassador Theatre

4604 Liberty Heights Avenue,
Baltimore, MD 21207

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Ambassador Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Northwest Baltimore has several of the more interesting movie houses, but it’s the Ambassador Theatre which is perhaps the most interesting to see. The Art Deco style theatre commands the block, and while it hasn’t been a movie theatre since 1968, it still shines in the grace it once had.

The Ambassador Theatre is the sister theatre of the famous Senator Theatre, and both were the work of architect John J. Zink. The Ambassador Theatre was somewhat larger and more ornate and opened September 15, 1935 with Marion Davies and Dick Powell in “Page Miss Glory”.

The Ambassador Theatre has in recent years, been used as a church, a beauty school and a church again. The theatre was opened on September 18, 1935 with Marion Davies in “Page Miss Glory”, and it’s opening helped shut down the Gwynn Theatre across the street. The Ambassador Theatre is a real gem of a building, and its exterior has survived the years quite well.

One of the outstanding features about the Ambassador Theatre is its vertical sign, which dominates Liberty Heights Avenue.

Sadly, the Ambassador Theatre was badly damaged by a fire which began at 12.30am on July 5, 2012.

Contributed by Charles Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 32 comments)

Maximillian Genus
Maximillian Genus on July 9, 2009 at 8:42 am

Goes under the gavel in about 20 minutes… Hoping beyond hope (as I am for The Senator – auction 6 days away) that some theatre-friendly entity picks this up.

View link

randytheicon
randytheicon on July 25, 2009 at 5:50 pm

Sadly, no one even showed up for this auction. I live less than a mile from the Ambassador…while the surrounding neighborhood isn’t bad, the immediate area of the theatre is rather shabby. The former building of the Gwynn, across the street, has a collapsed roof. There’s also a long-closed Super Pride market.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 8, 2010 at 7:05 am

An article about the Durkee circuit’s new Ambassador Theatre appeared in Boxoffice of December 14, 1935. The only photographs in the article depict the front and the projection booth, but there is considerable description.

Maximillian Genus
Maximillian Genus on July 5, 2012 at 9:17 am

Sad to report that The Ambassador caught fire around 12:30 this morning http://www.wbaltv.com/news/maryland/baltimore-city/Crews-battle-fires-at-historic-movie-theater-row-home/–/10131532/15410282/–/dn95c2/–/index.html No word on the cause of it as yet.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 10, 2015 at 1:18 pm

Linkrot repair: The December 14, 1935, Boxoffice article about the Ambassador Theatre can now be found at this link.

pnelson
pnelson on June 30, 2015 at 7:18 pm

Art deco beauty in this theatre.

rivest266
rivest266 on February 4, 2017 at 3:56 pm

The September 15th, 1935 grand opening ad can be found in the photo section for this cinema.

jammer
jammer on March 23, 2017 at 9:02 pm

My and I spend many hours watching films at this theater in the 60’s . From West side Story to The Nutty Professor to to the Wild Angels and John Wayne in The Sons of Katie Elder and so many more . I can still remember the concession counter and as you walked to your seats the “ Restroom ” sign was lit in neon purple and the door leading to the balcony. Unlike the photograph they show here , they have those purple lights on the walls next to the screen and made a bit spooky for a kid under 10 .And on rainy days they still used the same long tent , so you be dropped off at the curb and not get wet to the ticket booth and it was the same one from the 30’s . I passed by there during the 80’s and saw it was a beauty shop . I never known till I saw a picture years ago with a theater across the street was called in the 60’s Penn Fruit grocery store. The hangout for teens was Reads down at the end of the block Since I spent my childhood going to the Ambassador and Crest with my family and friends . Even as a kid , the outside of the Theater always seemed special and am glad its a Landmark , since I had never seen another Theater in Baltimore built like that ever .

Stosh
Stosh on March 24, 2017 at 6:12 am

jammer, where did you live back then? I was on Forest Park Avenue, a few blocks below the golf course.

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