2343 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard,
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Previous Names: Renaissance Casino Theatre
Opened as a combined vaudeville and motion picture theatre in c.1920, its location is on the northeast corner of Seventh Avenue and 137th Street. It was also known as the Renaissance Casino Theatre as it formed part of the Renaissance Casino complex which took up the entire block between 137th & 138th Streets. It consisted of the theatre on the 137th Street corner and a ballroom at the 138th Street corner.
The Renaissance Theatre was the first black controlled theatre in New York (the manager in 1921 was William C. Roach who was African-American) and it is listed in Film Daily Yearbooks 1930-1933 and 1940-1955 as being a “Negro theater” catering to African-American audiences.
It had disappeared from listings in F.D.Y. by the mid-1950’s but could have continued as a movie theatre until c.1975. In 2006, the building was derelict, unused and decaying rapidly. It was subsequently demolished.
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