Egyptian Theatre

116 W. 10th Street,
Sioux Falls, SD 57104

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EGYPTIAN Theatre; Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Another long-lost downtown Sioux Falls movie house, the Colonial Theatre was built in 1913 and opened on June 13, 1914. It was remodeled in 1926 in an Egyptian style, and was renamed Egyptian Theatre. It was remodelled again in 1938, by the architectural firm of Liebenberg and Kaplan.

The Egyptian Theatre was razed in the early-1960’s and replaced by a parking lot.

Contributed by Bryan

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on December 21, 2004 at 4:57 pm

Jack Liebenberg was the architect of the Egyptian Theatre and it had a seating capacity of 825.

roger
roger on December 30, 2004 at 10:18 pm

prior to the remodeling as the Egyptian, the theater was known as the Colonial Theater. Also after the theater became the Egyptian the local projectionists of Local 556 of the IATSE had a meeting and recreation room under the balcony of the theater. The theater was demolished in the early 60’s (to make way for a parking lot, of course) and sadly was no longer around when I moved to Sioux Falls in 1965.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on January 6, 2005 at 10:07 am

A correction to my posting on Dec 21, 2004.

Jack Liebenberg was not the original architect of the Egyptian, he was responsible (with his partner Seeman Kaplan) for the 1938 re-modelling of the theatre.

cosmo
cosmo on August 14, 2005 at 11:08 pm

I saw the 3D movie “The Maze” at the Egyptian in 1953. This was not a picture that was seen by many.and seeing “Them” and “The Great
Caruso” at the Egyptian.
What a wonderful childhood I had at the movies in Sioux Falls
Cosmo

Lefty57106
Lefty57106 on May 9, 2007 at 6:35 pm

According to Building South Dakota: A Historical Survey of the State’s Architecture to 1945 by David Erpestad and David Wood, the Egyptian was designed by Henry J. Schwarz in 1913 as a Senior project at the University of Pennsylvania. The Marquee was designed by J.J. Liebenberg in 1938. It does not mention anything about further renovation by Liebenberg. I have pictures of the Egyptian as early as 1927. If it was ever known as the Colonial, I don’t yet know.

Lefty57106
Lefty57106 on July 4, 2007 at 3:58 pm

Check out
View link
for a halfway decent account of the life of the Egyptian/Colonial Theater.

The Colonial closed in 1926 and reopened later that same year as the Egyptian. The 1938 renovation brought a larger, more impressive marquee by Liebenberg, but the Egyptian was there before that remodel.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 24, 2013 at 6:29 pm

Volume 4 of History of Dakota Territory by George W. Kingsbury says that Asher K. Pay opened the Colonial Theatre on June 13, 1914.

Page 14 of Eric Renshaw’s Forgotten Sioux Falls (Google Books preview has photos of the theater before and after its Egyptian-style remodeling, which the caption says took place in 1926.

Renshaw says that the Colonial opened on January 30, 1915, but I’m inclined to trust Kingsbury, whose book was actually published in 1915. There is also the record of a lawsuit that indicates that at least one of the Colonial’s roof trusses was already in place on February 23, 1914. That would be consistent with a June, 1914, opening.

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