Charles Theatre

1711 N. Charles Street,
Baltimore, MD 21202

Unfavorite 4 people favorited this theater

Showing 13 comments

rivest266 on February 12, 2017 at 8:37 am

April 21st, 1999 grand opening ad as a 5-plex can be found in the photo section for this cinema.

rivest266 on February 6, 2017 at 12:09 am

This reopened as The Charles on October 2nd, 1958. Grand opening ad in the photo section.

rivest266 on February 5, 2017 at 8:56 am

October 6th, 1939 grand opening ad as Times in the photo section. It opened as a newsreel theatre.

Iamcurious on July 6, 2011 at 12:49 pm

The Charles address is originally given as 1717 N. Charles St. when it was called The Times and where it continued as the single screen Charles Theater. The current incarnation of The Charles Theater does in fact list it’s official address as 1711 N. Charles since it’s 1999 renovation. The buildings it is housed in are designated 1711-1717 N Charles. It is worth noting that the newer side of the Charles Theater was formerly the Famous Ballroom which played host to many of the Left Bank Jazz Society’s most legendary shows between late 1966 and the early 1980’s. Below is a partial list of some of the many shows that took place there. I think you’ll recognize some heavy hitters in the list:

12-4-66 HERBIE HANCOCK, piano; RON CARTER, bass; WAYNE SHORTER, tenor sax; FREDDIE HUBBARD, trumpet; JACK DEJOHNETTE, drums (Famous Ballroom)

12-11-66 PEPPER ADAMS, baritone sax; FRANK FOSTER, tenor sax; BOBBY TIMMONS, piaon; FREDDIE WAITS, drums; CECIL McBEE, bass (Famous Ballroom)

12-18-66 JACKIE McLEAN, alto sax; SCOTTY HART, bass; LAMONT JOHNSON, piano; BILLY HIGGINS, drums (Famous Ballroom)

12-25-66 Christmas Holiday

1-1-67 New Year’s Holiday

1-8-67 No Concert

1-15-67 No Concert

1-22-67 No Concert

1-29-67 SONNY STITT, electric varitone, alto and tenor sax; DON PATTERSON, organ; BILLY JAMES, drums (Famous Ballroom)

2-5-67 COLEMAN HAWKINS, tenor saxophone; MAJOR HOLLEY, bass; OLIVER JACKSON, drums; BARRY HARRIS, piano (Famous Ballroom)

2-12-67 AL COHN, tenor sax; ZOOT SIMS, tenor sax; DAVE FRISHBERG, piano; VICTOR SPROLES, bass; STEVE SCHAEFFER, drums

2-19-67 LOU DONALDSON, alto sax; TOMMY TURRNETINE, trumpet; PECK MORRISON, bass; WALTER DAVIS JR., piano; LEO MORRIS, drums

2-26-67 WALTER BISHOP JR., piano; HAROLD VICK tenor & soprano sax & flute; DICK “TINY” BERK, drums; REGGIE JOHNSON, bass

3-5-67 BILLY HIGGINS, drums; WALTER BOOKER, bass; DAVE HUBBARD, tenor sax; CLAUDE HUBBARD, piano

3-12-67 BOOKER ERVIN, tenor sax; LENNIE McBROWNE, drums; HORACE PARLAN, piano; JAN ARNETT, bass


3-36-67 JIMMY HEATH, tenor sax; HANK MOBLEY, tenor sax; MICKEY ROKER, drums; CEDER WALTON, piano


4-16-67 YUSEF LATEEF, misc.; CECIL McBEE, bass; HUGH LAWSON, piano; ROY BROOKS, drums

4-23-67 FREDDIE HUBBARD, trumpet; BENNY MAUPIN, tenor sax; RONNY MATTHEWS, piano; HERBIE LEWIS, bass; FREDDIE WAITS, drums

4-3-67 MILT JACKSON, vibes; JIMMY HEATH, tenor sax; CEDAR WALTON, piano; MICKEY ROKER, drums; WALTER BOOKER, bass

5-7-67 JOHN COLTRANE, tenor sax & soprano sax; PHAROH SAUNDERS, tenor sax; ALICE COLTRANE, piano; DONALD GARRETT, bass; RASHID ALI, drums

Source: originally transcribed from the Left Bank Jazz Society 1970 Yearbook.

CSWalczak on December 2, 2009 at 11:35 pm

Here’s an historical article with pictures about the Charles from the Archives of the University of Baltimore: View link

randytheicon on June 12, 2009 at 6:27 pm

I don’t remember the Charles in “Cecil”. The theatres used were the Senator, Hippodrome (pre-restoration), and Beltway Movies 6 (the theatre the “guerillas” raid about halfway through). The alley used to access the Hippodrome was actually Davis St., which runs between Calvert St. & Guilford Ave. around Saratoga St.

randytheicon on June 12, 2009 at 5:55 pm

If I recall from Headley’s “Exit,” the Times was originally booked to show newsreels exclusively (hence the name “Times”).

Throughout the 1980s, the manager/director of the Charles was Pat Moran, who also played in John Waters' pictures and is now a well-respected Hollywood casting director. Moran’s projectionist, the late Garey Lambert, was one of the best in his field.

BrooklynJim on July 17, 2006 at 1:36 pm

I found a pair of Charles Theater pix on the links below:

View link
View link

BrooklynJim on June 18, 2006 at 10:22 am

For those of you with access to a well-stocked library, there’s a terrific B&W photo of the Charles at the time of “Star Wars.” It was included in Herbert H. Harwood, Jr.’s book, “Baltimore and Its Streetcars” (Quadrant Press, NY, softcover, 1984). I lack the technical capability and tools to scan and post, so perhaps one of you industrious folks can get it done for inclusion here. Good luck.

RobertR on March 29, 2006 at 11:46 am

A cute no smoking snipe from the 1980’s with Baltimores own, John Waters.
View link

MagicLantern on April 16, 2005 at 9:45 pm

This theater appears in John Waters' “Cecil B. Demented”.

William on November 21, 2003 at 9:43 am

The Charles Theatre is located at 1711 N. Charles Street.

BonoboProbiscis on January 9, 2003 at 5:04 pm

The Charles still retains it’s original wide screen & large theater. The 4 new screens are stadium and are located in a renovation of the adjacent building. There is a quite nice tappas bar/restaurant there as well. How about a new picture of the new snazzy front? Will provide …