8014 New Hampshire Avenue,
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The Langley Theatre, Located in Langley Park, Maryland opened its doors in March 11, 1952 with Frank Lovejoy in “Retreat, Hell!”.
It was a single screen theatre with an auditorium of 987 seats, all on a single floor. It also featured a “crying room” for patrons who brought young children to the movies and would wind up disturbing other patrons. To accomodate the parents, they were ushered to the crying room so the parents could watch the film as their babies cried behind sound proof glass.
The Langley Theatre was one of the few theatres which utilized the ‘Sensurround’ sound system. In the 1970’s, a handful of films were released in ‘Sensurround’ which used large bass speakers during key periods in the film to cause the theatre to shake and vibrate. The films which were released in this format were “Earthquake”, “Midway”, “Rollercoaster”, and “Battlestar Gallactica”. The Langley Theatre also housed the Kintec Stereo system, a simulated stereo system for films that were presented with a stereo soundtrack.
The Langley Theatre was owned by the Kogat/Burka group (K/B Theatres). The theatre was a showcase theatre for the chain, featuring many first run exclusive engagements. The most prominent of the exclusive films were “The Godfather” in 1972 and “Star Trek-The Motion Picture” in 1979.
In the mid-late 1980’s, the theatre was converted into a twin which houses two 375 seat theatres. The original ambiance of the theatre was destroyed at that time when the theatre was forced to expand to keep pace with the multi-plexes opening during that time period.
The theatre ultimately closed in the early-1990’s when K/B Theatres went out of business, ending the chain which had 26 theatres in the Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia area during its hey day. The Langley Theatre was but one of K/B Theatres single screen gems, which also included, in Silver Spring, MD, the recently restored AFI Silver Theatre and the Flower Theatre (now a church), in Bethesda, MD, the Bethesda Theatre (now live shows) and the Baronet Theatre (demolished), and in the District, the MacArthur Theatre (now a CVS pharmacy) and the KB Cinema (now a furniture store), but to name a few.
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