Roger L. Stevens Center

407 W. Fourth Street,
Winston-Salem, NC 27101

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JEDIII on January 26, 2016 at 2:14 pm

Camel City Cleaners sponsored some of the Saturday morning shows in the 1960s. When it did, admission was twenty-five cents or five wire coat hangers. I brought coat hangers.

actorscotty on September 23, 2013 at 10:04 am

WMboylesaid: “This photo doesn’t show the upper balcony for blacks, before the theater integrated in the early 60’s. Cropping by the photographer was probably intentional, though the lens might not have been able to take it all in. There was a separate entrance around the corner from the front, along with totally separate accommodations. Thank God those days are gone” I remember how i discovered that,,, i was on stage for the first time to do my walking on glass act.. dick Bennick introduced me,i walked out looked up and,saw the exttra balcony…. what a surprise,,,, My thought was,wow even more kids to perform for…..treasure those memories

wmboyle on September 23, 2013 at 8:33 am

I was an usher there from 1959-1961, while a student at R. J. Reynolds High School. $.60 an hour plus all the free popcorn I could eat. Minimum wage was 0.75 for most jobs, but theaters and agriculture we allowed to pay less. We wore uniforms then, light blue with brass buttons and ties, to match the classy architecture. Among my duties was putting up the marquee lettering – no fun in the winter!

This photo doesn’t show the upper balcony for blacks, before the theater integrated in the early 60’s. Cropping by the photographer was probably intentional, though the lens might not have been able to take it all in. There was a separate entrance around the corner from the front, along with totally separate accommodations. Thank God those days are gone!

actorscotty on May 19, 2013 at 8:36 am

to Bell 1423;;;; remember the downtown a go go very well,was the night Dick Bennick opened it….thanks for the reminder

Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois
Ret. AKC (NAC) CCC Bob Jensen, Manteno, Illinois on May 19, 2013 at 6:47 am

The Colonial had a Robert Morton Theater Pipe Organ. First it had a 2/5 (manuals/ranks, keyboards/sets of pipes), and later a 2/8. Anyone know what happened to either organ?

The Robert Morgan Organ Company was located in Van Nuys, California. Harold J. Werner the head of the company named the company after his new-born son Robert Mort Werner.

What ever happened to Robert Mort Werner? Later in life he joined NBC as a producer of the “Today” show, produced the “Tonight” show with Jack Parr and introduced such shows as “Bonanza” “Star Trek” and “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In” and was President of the American Academy of Television and Arts and Sciences.

M “Red” L

actorscotty on March 2, 2013 at 6:03 am

wow,nemthys,I must have known you back then, i certainly remember the pretty dancers, i did magic shows,walked on glass barefoot,was a clown sometime etc…will always treasure those days

nemthys on March 1, 2013 at 9:49 pm

I was a Go-Go girl at the Saturday morning kiddie shows. I remember auditioning for Dick Bennick onstage one Saturday and then he signed us up to dance once a month. I was 12 years old! Those were the best Saturdays. 50 cents gave you a great band, and a double feature movie and if you were lucky you could find a cute boy to hold hands with during the movie!

wsnostalgia on January 11, 2013 at 1:07 pm

I looked at some of the old photos from the 50s and 60s which brought back some wonderful old memories. It is truly a shame the uniqueness of the Carolina Theater was lost in the renovation.

ImagoTwist on October 29, 2012 at 8:45 am

It’s good to hear from you Mr. Scott! I hope you enjoyed seeing the photos of yourself (Jackie Gantt) from the glory days of the Carolina. Would love to see any photos you have of the Carolina if you could email them to me:

ImagoTwist on October 29, 2012 at 8:41 am

Hi Cyclone, I’d love to see these photographs. If you want to post your dad’s photos, you can email them to me and I’ll be glad to do it. My email is:

CycloneTaylor on October 27, 2012 at 3:46 am

It took me awhile to find anything about the Carolina Theater. I’m really glad I came across this web page. I’ve always wanted to see this magnificent theater that I’ve always heard about. It’s a shame the NCSA had to destroy so much of the artifacts. My dad used to play in the band called the Cyclones during the late 50’s early 60’s. I have a few pictures that can be added to your collection of images Imago. Let me know the best way to get them to you.

actorscotty on October 21, 2012 at 9:53 pm

I lived in winston salem,in the fifties and sixties,the stage of the carolina theater was the first public performing venue for me.walking on glass barefoot. From that beginning,became,ronald mcdonald,,played with a touring band for 20years,joined the screen actors guild,have had speaking roles in 34 films and six tv series,thanks and rest in peace dear friend Dan Austel Jackie Gantt (now known as John Henry Scott)

ImagoTwist on July 22, 2012 at 8:58 am

Hi r. bell! I am collecting images of the Carolina for a possible website to preserve the memory of that great theater for our generation, but especially those too young to remember it…. Do you have any photos of the Carolina or bands onstage there? I didn’t know about the Go Go place above Woolworths but would love to see any photos or publicity about it or the Carolina if you have it.

bell1423 on July 21, 2012 at 3:11 pm

dont forget the downtown go go above the wolworths next to the carolina theater was a teen dance place went there back when i was 13 14 years old. was another great place back in those days .

bell1423 on July 21, 2012 at 3:09 pm

I used to go to the carolina theater kiddie shows every saturday morning ,for years growing up in winston.rode the bus downtown stayed most of the day.started when i was around 8 years old and up. i used to get free months pass from dan austel the manager when i would perform on stage ,or later when as a teen played in a band before the double feature movies played. loved that place and just about all the kids back in those days late 50s and early sixtys . remember dick bennet as host also. r bell wsnc

Carprog on March 15, 2012 at 7:20 pm

I agree with Imago the Winston-Salem Carolina theater needs its own article.

Imago on April 15, 2010 at 1:52 pm

The Carolina Theater in Winston-Salem NC was bought by the North Carolina School of the Arts in the late 1970’s and “renovations” were completed in 1983 -not 2003. I also question why it is listed under its current name, The Roger L. Stevens Center, since the Carolina, which was a historic and beautiful theater was gutted, not renovated, to make the Stevens Center. The original marquee was removed and the exterior has been almost entirely rebuilt. The proscenium, which featured a magnificent sculptural tableau of charioteers and a 7 foot tall statue of a goddess, was destroyed by the N.C. School of the Arts in order to raise the orchestra level to the height of the first balcony. Consequently, the original street level lobby was closed off and patrons now have to enter and immediately climb stairs (to the original first balcony level) to enter at the new orchestra level. To those of us who still remember the Carolina, she died over 30 years ago and I don’t want that history to be lost.

Element02 on March 26, 2010 at 5:15 pm

The Stevens Center hosted a series called ‘Films on Fourth’ for a few years, very recently if I recall. They stopped this in 2006. Mostly arthouse and independent films that were only playing in NY and LA, the shows were often soldout and filled to capacity. I saw ‘Lost in Translation’ here and the entire audience applauded when the film was over. Not sure why they stopped this series, it appeared quite successful.

spectrum on October 13, 2009 at 7:08 pm

The UNCSA completed their multimillion dollar renovation of the Stevens Center in 2003.

Their web page is now:

Retrofun on August 25, 2007 at 9:32 am

I performed in bands on the stage of the Carolina Theater in the 1960s.

I have some photos, as well as some “Winston-Salem Journal” newspaper ads. I also have a sound bite (MP3) of WTOB Radio DJ, Dick Bennick.

He was a MC at the theater for many of their Saturday Morning Kiddie Shows and for several late night horror shows. This may have helped him develop his DR. PAUL BEARER character, which later moved to TV.

I will try the “Add Photo” link (in the “Add Your Cinema Treasure! section) to the left to add my photos. As for my MP3 file, I don’t see a link to upload it.

SharonApplegate on August 7, 2002 at 2:30 pm
  1. The style of the Stevens Center theatre is neoclassical. 2. The architects are Stanhope Johnson and R. O. Bannan. 3. The theatre was purchased by the North Carolina School of the Arts (not its School of Filmmaking which didn’t even open until 1993!)and re-opened in 1983 after extensive restoration. The full name of the current theatre is the Roger L. Stevens Center. Thanks.