Rialto Theatre

420 Broadway,
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701

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Rialto Theatre

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The Rialto Theatre was one of the six theatres in downtown Cape Girardeau. It opened in 1940 seating 722. It was remodeled in November 1953 and lasted until 1989.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

35divmp
35divmp on October 5, 2007 at 11:23 pm

The Rialto is now a part of Horizon Printing which is owned by the Southeast Missourian newspaper.

rivest266
rivest266 on January 31, 2010 at 4:28 pm

This opened on the 4th of September, 1940. grand opening ad is at View link

rivest266
rivest266 on January 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm

The Rialto was unhappy about the new Esquire theatre in 1947. ad is at View link

rivest266
rivest266 on January 31, 2010 at 4:38 pm

Wrong ad.
Rialto protest ad is at View link

ksteinhoff
ksteinhoff on November 11, 2010 at 9:16 pm

Bad news. The roof collapsed during a rain storm.

View link

It’s been demolished.

ksteinhoff
ksteinhoff on November 11, 2010 at 9:21 pm

I met my wife-to-be there when I walked out of the world’s worst movie.

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ksteinhoff
ksteinhoff on November 11, 2010 at 9:25 pm

Photos of the 1964 Southeast Missouri State College Homecoming parade passing in front of the Rialto Theater.

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ksteinhoff
ksteinhoff on November 16, 2010 at 10:44 pm

Chuck,

As promised, here’s what Cape Girardeau’s Rialto Theater looks like today.

View link

From the front, it looks the same as it has in recent years. Everything back of the lobby has been demolished. I can’t say that I blame the owners; it was just a shell when a rain storm brought the roof down.

The page contains some links to other info about the Rialto and other Esquire theaters.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 6, 2011 at 5:10 am

Boxoffice of January 9, 1954, had this article about the remodeling of the Rialto Theatre. It mentions the opening year as 1940, but gives the seating capacity as only 600. Design of the remodeling, which was carried out to convert the house to CinemaScope, was attributed to local architect Harold Long.

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