Pi Alley

12 Pi Alley,
Boston, MA 02108

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Pi Alley

Cosy, down an alley off of Washington Street apparently named for pi newsprint type dumped in the alley. Now a bar?

Contributed by Alan V. Karr

Recent comments (view all 61 comments)

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on May 17, 2006 at 8:07 am

I never went into the Pi Alley, but from the mid-1970s to mid-1980s I walked thru Pi Alley almost every weekday morning around 815AM and the fire exit doors were sometimes open while cleaning was underway. The doors were on the south side of the alley about half way in.The auditorium (I only saw one) was the epitome of “plain”.

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on July 22, 2007 at 12:49 pm

I recall seeing movies here. Exterior in more recent photo:
View link

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on November 3, 2007 at 10:39 am

For those unfamiliar with this cinema: in the very nice color photo posted above by Howard Haas, the original poster cases can be seen on the right and left just inside the opening under the marquee. The cinema was just a short distance up the alley, on the left side. In the distance you can see daylight at the east end of Pi Alley.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on July 31, 2008 at 7:20 am

Correction to the above posting: “ you can see daylight at the West end of Pi Alley.”

danpetitpas
danpetitpas on August 18, 2008 at 9:09 pm

I too saw Tommy in Quintaphonic Sound at the Pi Alley in two consecutive showings. Those days, they didn’t kick you out between shows.

It’s funny almost all of the theaters Sack Theaters developed were built into parking garages. Seems to have been a lot of garages built in Boston as part of the 1960s urban renewal projects. The Cheri was a stand-alone garage. The 57 was in the garage part of the 57 Hotel. The Beacon Hill was butted up against the One Beacon Street underground garage. The Pi Alley was in the Pi Alley garage. I think the only Sack Theater not in a garage was the Copley. The other theaters Sack bought from other companies.

Kerry_Maxwell
Kerry_Maxwell on September 4, 2013 at 5:08 pm

In the mid 80’s, the Pi Alley was where my wife and I went to see Nightmare on Elm St. and The Evil Dead II. Good times.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on April 23, 2016 at 11:02 am

The building which contained the Pi Alley cinema is to be demolished at some future date so that the parcel can be “redeveloped”. I learned this from the business news in the Boston Herald.

jake66
jake66 on February 14, 2018 at 10:04 am

This place freaked me out-I remember you went down like 3 escalators/floors to get to the auditoriums, and then the auditoriums were oddly designed-really long, narrow/slim and kind of claustrophobic. I also recall, because the auditoriums were so far underground, that you could actually hear the rumble of the Green Line subway trains traveling between Park Station and Government Center on the other side of the theater walls. I suppose that’s why it was showing “Jaws 3D”: crappy films get booked in crappy theatres.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on February 14, 2018 at 10:11 am

That sounds to me like the Beacon Hill, not the Pi Alley.

dickneeds111
dickneeds111 on August 30, 2018 at 3:06 pm

Sorry Jake but Ron is right. You are not talking the PiAlley but you are talking about the crappy Beacon Hill which was a very annoying underground theatre. Saw Towering Inferno, and that horrible presentation of This Is Cinerama there. Hprrible theatre. Long & Narrow.

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