Wellmont Theatre

5 Seymour Street,
Montclair, NJ 07042

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The Wellmont Theatre was built in 1922 as a legitimate theatre and converted into a motion picture theatre in 1929. The original entrance on the main avenue was 400 Bloomfield Avenue.

By 1941 it was operated by Warner Bros. Circuit Management Corp. In 1951, it was listed with a seating capacity of 2,137. In the 1970’s, the theatre was triplexed and the entry was moved around the corner to the lobby’s former emergency exit. The original lobby then became a diner. The largest auditorium is the balcony theatre. Two auditoriums with smaller screens were created in the former orchestra seating.

The Westmont Theatre closed in 2006. In 2008, it was reported that the theatre was sold and the new owners were working on a plan to reopen it for concerts and other events. In 2008, as part of the renovations, the Wellmont Theatre became a single screen again, with the removal of the triplexing. The Wellmont Theatre reopened November 1, 2008, as a concert venue.

Contributed by Charles Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 72 comments)

iatse311
iatse311 on November 28, 2009 at 4:19 pm

View link this is a good one and whole set looks good

moviebuff82
moviebuff82 on November 28, 2009 at 4:28 pm

the dha 30th anniversary concert was held here some weeks ago.

shoeshoe14
shoeshoe14 on February 10, 2010 at 6:09 pm

Going to see a concert here on Saturday night. I’ve only seen the outside.

shoeshoe14
shoeshoe14 on February 14, 2010 at 8:09 pm

Wow. Saw my first show here. Usually I biked past it under construction. New marquee. Easy entrance from a side alley abutting the Main Street. The cop car blox that, lot behind and garage down the way. Not a lot of traffic considering.

The interior is very nice. The multiple bands that ring the proscenium stretch far out and are very beautiful. It’s sort of plain downstairs, with 1 Corinthian column on either side of the stage. Nice dim lighting. Bars in the back on both sides. The balcony is nice and those are original seats. There’s multiple rows behind main orchestra, separated by railings and they are removable plush seats which are comfy. The main orchestra on the concrete floor are the same seats and are removable, since it doubles as a banquet spot. The great eye in the ceiling is simple but pretty. Sound is great. Highly recommend seeing a show here. I did spot the different amounts of seating/standing room per fire code, so that will be in the next post. Also, there were at least 8 firemen there as there are every show since one of them said The Wellmont owners don’t have an efficient and effective fire dispersal plan in effect for 1500 attendees.

shoeshoe14
shoeshoe14 on February 14, 2010 at 8:14 pm

Reserved Seating: 1916 (Main 800, Stage 92, Balcony 1024)

Standees: 2561 (Main 1445, Stage 92, Balcony 1024)

Banquet: 590 (Main 498, Stage 92, Balcony 0)

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on July 22, 2012 at 9:10 pm

Featured in this 1965 trade report: Boxoffice

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on February 6, 2013 at 9:07 pm

Seating capacity needs correcting. Probably around 2,000, and Wellmont also permits standees of another 2,000 or more at concerts.

markp
markp on February 6, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Tinseltoes, I usually dont differ with people here on CT, but I work here on occassion as a stagehand. The actual number of fixed seats in the building is probably correct at the top, because only the balcony has fixed seats. The entire orchestra is flat concrete used mostly for standing room. If a show comes in requiring seats, they set up portable chairs.

Tinseltoes
Tinseltoes on February 7, 2013 at 3:48 pm

Sorry!I assumed that the seating reported by “shoeshoe14” above on 2/14/2010 came from a reliable source. It seemed in keeping with the 2,137 seats that were claimed for the Wellmont in trade annuals when it was operating as a single-screen cinema.

markp
markp on February 8, 2013 at 1:56 pm

Tinseltoes, no need to be sorry. You are one of the more knowledgeable people on this site. I enjoy all your postings about things that happened 40, 50, 60 years ago. I only know this from working there. Otherwise, I would have thought the same like you did.

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