277 Canal Street,
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Architects: David M. Oltarsch
Previous Names: Canal Cinema, Cinema Giglio
The Major Theatre was known under a few names during it’s life. In later years it was known as the Cinema Giglio and may also have been known as the Canal Cinema at some point, though not to be confused with the Canal Theatre further away on Canal Street. It is currently in the bustling part of Canal Street in the heart of Chinatown as Chinatown continues to eat up most of what is left of Little Italy.
It showed Italian language films when it was known as the Cinema Giglio. After the Cinema Giglio closed, it showed Chinese language films for a brief period before being converted to retail.
Today, much of the exterior still exists of the Major Theater, including the marquee, although the interior has been converted to retail and flea market like space. Much of the ornamentation still existed in 2004. When first entering, you could easily tell you are in the lobby of an old theater, right down to some mirrors on the walls. Once passing into the main auditorium of the small theater, it still screams theater as much of the ceiling plasterwork and columns still exist. Perhaps much of the walls also still exist, although mostly covered by pegboard for the merchandise now in the space. In 2014 only the former lobby is in use as a store.
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