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Fine Arts Theatre

36 Biltmore Avenue,
Asheville, NC 28801

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Fine Arts Theatre

Viewing: Photo | Street View

This Art Deco style theatre is the only theatre left operating in downtown Asheville. It originally opened as the Strand Theatre on October 24, 1946 and had a seating capacity of 800 in orchestra and balcony. It was renamed Fine Arts Theatre on June 8, 1962.

It is the home of the Asheville Film Festival held in November of each year. The Fine Arts runs first run art and independent films.

The building itself is a cream color with two sets of block glass running from the top of the building down to the marquee on each side. It has a small triangle-shaped marquee with the theatre name in neon on each side.

Contributed by Chuck Van Bibber

Recent comments (view all 29 comments)

Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers on October 18, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Jan 6 1980 NOW PLAYING is “MYSTIQUE” and “DUTCH GIRLS” All Films X- rated.

canibfrankwithyou on September 22, 2011 at 9:06 pm

In the mid 90’s I was involved in the installation of the new projection and sound equipment for the renovation of the theatre. The interior was completely removed and replaced with new seating, lobby and updated restrooms. A new projection room was added for the main auditorium while the existing booth was used for the balcony auditorium. A stage was added to the main auditorium for live performance events. Stage curtains were implemented in both auditoriums.

canibfrankwithyou on September 22, 2011 at 9:11 pm

The theatre is independently owned.

Patsy on March 1, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Was the Strand originally on College?

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on March 2, 2012 at 5:37 am

Patsy, there was an earlier Strand Theatre in Asheville, from 1915 to about 1935, but it was on Patton Avenue. It was renamed the State Theatre in the 1930s.

Mikeoaklandpark on March 2, 2012 at 11:40 am

It will be interesting to see if this theater will add digital projection or fold. I hope they invest and add the digital.

Mikeoaklandpark on August 20, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Theater was converted to digitall the first week of August.

Mikeoaklandpark on August 23, 2013 at 4:23 am

Chuck 1231 I think the Asheville film festival is in Oct. It was last year. A note this theater has started showing slides, but still use the curtains about 5 minutes before the start of a film and at the end of a film. Very nice compromise.

rivest266 on August 21, 2016 at 10:21 am

October 24th, 1946 grand opening ad as Strand as well as the June 8th, 1962 grand opening as Fine Arts in the photo section.

rivest266 on August 21, 2016 at 5:15 pm

December 13th, 1996 grand opening ad also in the photo section.

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