Midway Theatre

1829 E. Allegheny Avenue,
Philadelphia, PA 19134

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Showing 1 - 25 of 32 comments

dedelp
dedelp on September 25, 2013 at 1:35 pm

as a kid I remember seeing BOBBY DARIN in person at the Midway, he drove up to the front of the theatre in his Mercury!

donogrady
donogrady on May 7, 2010 at 9:04 am

Mr. DeLorca, what happened to Betty the cashier; I wunder

john daggett
john daggett on April 23, 2010 at 1:33 am

And so what happened to that staff as well as so many others????
Amd what happened to the operatoers union?????

donogrady
donogrady on March 22, 2010 at 11:32 am

The cashier was Betty and the projectionist was George. Anyone else remember the staff in 1977?

donogrady
donogrady on March 22, 2010 at 11:26 am

Mr. DeLorca is correct, the Midway closed in 1977. I too worked at that Theater until the final day. If memory serves, Mr. Delorca was a “Dead Ringer” for another employee of the Midway by the name of Willard Pierce. Good times, Good times.

Noah Boddy

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on January 20, 2010 at 11:01 pm

Here is a July 1979 photo from Temple U:
http://tinyurl.com/yfuk83h

krolart
krolart on August 10, 2009 at 10:50 am

Great photo. I remember the Midway well. I was working there as an assistant manager in 1967.

FrankDeLorca
FrankDeLorca on July 3, 2008 at 12:26 pm

We were still wearing those heavy, hot, woolen jackets in the late 60s when I started working there! They had gold braid, brass buttons with the “SW” logo on them (for Stanley-Warner)and a gold SW shoulder patch. No matter how many times we took them to the cleaners, we couldn’t get rid of their odd, musty smell. In the early 70s, they bought us some great new (and lightweight) black tuxedo jackets with thin black satin lapels. Those were a welcome change! I still have a few of the original uniform’s brass buttons & a patch, too… somewhere!

earlwlaney
earlwlaney on July 3, 2008 at 11:37 am

Yes,we wore uniforms and carried flashlights. I remember during the time I worked there (1956) they exchanged our old uniforms for a new “modern” style uniform. If I remember correctly, we went from a short jacket with a bow tie to a suit length jacket with a regular tie. I believe they were dark blue. We used to change our clothes in one of the old dressing rooms behind the stage on an upper floor.

portrichmond
portrichmond on July 3, 2008 at 5:18 am

earlaney, did the ushers wear uniforms? would you please describe them?

earlwlaney
earlwlaney on July 1, 2008 at 12:34 pm

I worked as an usher at the Midway during the summer of 1956 while a student at NE High. I was paid 60 cents per hour and I remember one of my jobs was to wake people up after the last show who were asleep.

clyneek
clyneek on February 18, 2008 at 8:36 am

Thank you Frank, my husband and I were going crazy trying to come up with the name of that 3rd theater.

FrankDeLorca
FrankDeLorca on February 17, 2008 at 8:22 pm

The Iris — just around the corner from the Midway. It was on Kensington Ave, just off Allegheny Ave.

clyneek
clyneek on February 17, 2008 at 6:40 pm

There were 3 movie theaters in the same area, the Midway, the Kent and the????? Can anyone help me out???

lostharvestmovie
lostharvestmovie on February 17, 2008 at 7:32 am

I went to Mastbaum High, starting in Fall 1981— all I ever saw was the worthless Burger King; that’s gone now too? How grand the Midway must have been.

Gerald Clough
Mastbaum ‘84

hondo59
hondo59 on May 1, 2007 at 8:33 am

There was a small balcony; there is no doubt about that.

Coasterbear
Coasterbear on April 30, 2007 at 7:21 pm

I remember The Midway very fondly as a child. There were two films that I saw there that I can recall. The first “Mary Poppins” and a few years later I went with my Dad, the only time i can ever remember going to the movies with him to see “Dr Zhivago”. I don’t remember there being a balcony there, but i guess there was according to reports. One of the films that was shown there that I really wanted to see but they told me I was too young was “Valley Of The Dolls” Back then they didn’t have ratings for films. “Valley” had a rating of “M” for mature audiences. I finally saw it later in life and would have loved to have seen it on “the big screen”.

hondo59
hondo59 on March 10, 2007 at 4:39 am

Dear Frank,
Did the Merben have another name before being named for Mervin and Ben? Is the roller rink now a self-storage place up near the Merben parking lot? I think it was called Concord Lanes. I guess it was never a theater even though it looks like one.

I saw “Murder on the Orient Express” and “The Last of Sheila” at this grand place. As I recall, the Midway was extremely art deco. There was a small, separate balcony which was closed for reasons indicated above.
I hope those protesters are enjoying their closed-up Burger King too!

kencmcintyre
kencmcintyre on October 2, 2006 at 6:00 am

Here is the 1932 photo again, as I apparently botched the first one:
http://tinyurl.com/jwhzp

portrichmond
portrichmond on October 1, 2006 at 5:28 am

Frank DeLorca, can you add anything to iobdennis' description of the interior of the Midway?
I remember the Midway as having the coldest air conditioning of any theater I’ve ever been in including the downtown palaces.
My recollection of the Midway dates to the mid 1950’s onward to 1965, as I recall there were 5 aisles in this behemoth of a showplace.

krolart
krolart on July 3, 2006 at 5:32 pm

Hey Frank, did your brother also work at the Midway?
Art S.

hondo59
hondo59 on March 30, 2006 at 4:16 am

What a great art deco interior! When Burger King purchased/leased the lot and threatened to tear it down which it did, people protested at nearby BKs by making their purchases by paying in pennies. The “protest” did not work. K and A lost a giant when they razed the Midway.

Did the Merben have another name?