Bala Theatre

157 Bala Avenue,
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004

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Showing 1 - 25 of 32 comments

aep1974 on August 30, 2017 at 9:28 pm

I had absolutely NO idea this theater closed! I went as recently as 2004/2005. Very sad.

DavidZornig on November 26, 2015 at 8:31 pm

I understand. I am familiar with the original rules. Unfortunately even the CT Admins know that there would likely be no photos whatsoever for many of the theaters listed, if they relied solely on those taken by the individual members posting them. Because literally thousands of the theaters have been gone for over 50 years. Unless someone is a CT member, who just happens to find their dad’s shoebox full of old theater pics and posts them here, they would never see the light of day. As long as we make every effort to credit the original photo source whenever possible, all is good. That’s why there are 9 different types of licensing to choose from, whenever posting a photo. I even make sure to use the Copyright license, when I know that the image is such or from a given collection. If someone on Facebook has a story that relates to the photo used, I post that too giving them credit for the copy.

I’m sure you’ve noticed on many of the pages, that they sit dormant for upwards of 5 years before newly found photos are ever posted. That’s why I alert the list in the comments about the photos I post, as well as having posted them. It sometimes revives interest in the given theater, and sparks memories from those who have commented in the past. When they see a new angle or old promotion the photos may portray. (Or the new stories that accompany them as I mentioned above.) Hopefully CT and all the photos will remain long after we have left this earth. I feel that’s kind of the point of CT. That’s also a reason to actively re-post photos in the Photos Section, that were previously in now dead links in the Comments. Because early internet links seem to be drying up. As people stop paying for the hosting. Even the Library of Congress site is not connecting properly.

HowardBHaas on November 26, 2015 at 8:09 pm

I didn’t mean from this site. I meant from an official website of the theater itself when still open. That’s what I noted in my own photo gallery on my computer, where I have more of them. FYI, originally, the rules of this website were to post photos we ourselves taken, albeit those rules aren’t being enforced anymore.

DavidZornig on November 26, 2015 at 8:02 pm

Where is it then? It’s not in the Photos Section or linked to in any of the Comments. Because I always check first. If you posted it before it appears to be gone now. I can only credit the sources I get them from. If they don’t credit the original sources, there is no way to know where any of them come from. And I often do a reverse image search on many. I always give proper credit whenever I can. I’ve posted over 2,300 photos to CT in over 10 years. Be glad that it got posted for others to see. Because it does not appear to have been posted previously.

HowardBHaas on November 26, 2015 at 7:46 pm

I captured that photo long ago from a website that belonged to the Bala Theatre, not any such individual.

DavidZornig on November 26, 2015 at 11:09 am

1950 photo added courtesy of Denise Storti.

markp on April 12, 2015 at 7:40 am

The longer it sits, the worse the situation will get.

TheALAN on April 11, 2015 at 10:34 pm

It has been four months since my last comment and still not a peep!

TheALAN on December 10, 2014 at 5:59 pm

Since the Bala Theatre is now closed and its future unknown, any new info. will be appreciated, and thanks!

markp on October 18, 2014 at 8:02 am

I use to clean the screens for Cablevision when they had the theatre and until they felt that was a waste of money. This is a very beautiful theatre. The triplexing was done very nicely. I hope you can still do 35mm stuff. I, as a now former projectionist, after 38 years, love to see folks who still embrace film over digital.

Reel Bala Theatre
Reel Bala Theatre on October 18, 2014 at 1:49 am

ATB, Reel Cinemas is a small regional chain, so not the corporate monolith that is Bowtie. I am not sure what the deal with Bowtie was because I started managing 7-8 months after that. It seems though that they realized fairly quickly that they didn’t want to stay around. However the theater is very pretty and so many elements of the “Egyptian Revival theme” are still here (anyone interested please stop in and ask for Karl, I manage most days of the week, I will happily give a tour). We are also trying to balance our projection setup where we have 35mm and digital. Trying to see if we can create some interesting 35mm repertory events, while still playing first-run features, like a horror film marathon we’re doing on October 31st, 2014 in conjunction with Exhumed Films. We hope to do more special events, hopefully on “celluloid”, since they will fit so well with the theater’s classic aesthetic.

atb on August 23, 2013 at 7:50 am

and who deleted my comment on this theater as well?

HowardBHaas on August 17, 2013 at 6:21 pm

I already amended my Intro above.

atb on August 17, 2013 at 6:08 pm

This theater — and the Anthony Wayne in Wayne — are NOT part of the Bow Tie Cinemas chain. They are now part of “Reel Cinemas.” Anyone know when or why this happened? Does anyone know anything about Reel Cinemas?

HowardBHaas on July 20, 2013 at 7:20 pm

Yes, already revised in my Intro above, chain link, etc. Bow Tie!

HowardBHaas on October 3, 2012 at 7:57 pm

This week, a 2nd screen has been converted to digital projection.

HowardBHaas on November 26, 2011 at 5:54 pm

Now showcasing “Hugo” in 3D.

HowardBHaas on August 17, 2011 at 7:39 am

This year, the Bala has 3D digital projection.

HowardBHaas on July 15, 2009 at 8:09 am

Vintage photo showing original marquee:
View link

BigK01 on February 2, 2009 at 8:22 pm

I remember going here in 7th grade with friends to see the flintstones movie. This was when it was still a big single screen and I remember the theaters details keep my attion more than the movie. I also remember that if you smacked the seat backs, dust clouds would appear.

Powers6 on November 3, 2008 at 9:48 pm

Dodger That would have been about 1958 by which time it was called the Bala. It was indeed a great old house. If I remember correctly at one point in the mid 1950’s or early 1960’s the theater had a a free bus that brought the kids from Wynfield Heights to the theater on Saturday morning and deposited them back home again after the show. The last movie I saw there was a ridiculous Arnold Schartzinager monstrosity about him getting pregnant- I watched it alone in the auditorium as a favor to Constantine to check for any defects in the new print (those were the days!) before it was triplexed. The BX80’s were without a doubt the best theater projectors ever built, better than any of the Simplex models.Powers 6

dodgerg on November 2, 2008 at 4:04 pm

Powers6 – Wow. I’m sorry I can’t remember any of that. Are you referring to the original Egyptian or the newer Bala? Must be the Bala if your talking about a video store across the street.

Powers6 on November 2, 2008 at 3:33 pm

To Dodger- I saw my first 35mm projectors in this house, they were Brenkert BX80’s with Peerless lamps. My wife rescued what I believe was one of the two Brenkert heads I saw there when I was ten and I have it put together but with an Ashcraft lamp. Do you remember which Peerless lamp model it was? It would have had to have been one of the two models manufactured that had glass light up name plates on their tops. I remember that booth fairly well- the rewinds were originally in a separate room to the left, I think, and I remember an operator named Mike. Constantine was a great guy despite the fact that he ran a video store across the street!

dodgerg on May 27, 2007 at 11:16 am

One of my earliest — and scariest — memories of the old Egyptian Theater dates back to 1948, when I saw “Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein” there at a late afternoon matinee. By the time the movie ended, it was starting to get dark, and I had to walk back home alone, constantly looking over my shoulder for the terrifying Frankenstein Monster, whom I was certain was following me home. Just one of my many fond memories of that great old theater.

HowardBHaas on May 27, 2007 at 3:24 am

A classic series has been held for $5 admit 7 PM Wednesday & Thursday evenings, in one of the 2 side auditoriums. Casablanca April 11-12, Singin in the Rain April 18-19, Sunset Boulevard April 25-26, Citizen Kane May 2-3, Some Like it Hot, May 9-10, West Side Story, May 16-17, Annie Hall May 23-24, Breakfast at Tiffanys, May 30-31. So far, few have attended, likely due to lack of PR in the Philadelphia area media market.