3128 W. Madison Street,
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Architects: Walter W. Ahlschlager
Styles: Italian Renaissance
The 3,097-seat Senate Theatre was originally opened on February 12, 1921 with Roscoe (Fatty) Arbuckle in “Brewster’s Millions”. Located in the Garfield Park neighborhood, the Senate Theatre was located on W. Madison Street between N. Albany Avenue & N Kedzie Avenue, close to Garfield Park itself.
It was built for the Lubliner & Trinz circuit but its management was taken over five years later by Balaban & Katz.
In its first decade or so of operation, it featured both live stage shows and movies as well as a 3/17 Kimball organ. It was remodeled and reopened on December 30, 1937 and switched to movies only.
Larger and more luxurious theatres like the Paradise Theatre and Marbro Theatre nearby drew audiences away from the Senate Theatre, and by the 1950’s, it was already falling into decline.
During its last years, it screened Spanish-language films. It finally was closed in 1969, and was torn down eight years later.
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