RKO Cleans UP Flushing

Motion Picture Herald, June 19, 1948:

flushing

“Sol Sorkin with his broom brigade, ready to clean up the town, and also the box office of the RKO Theatre, Flushing, New York. Sol is right in the middle, wearing a broad grin, and surrounded by his gang”

 

Legendary theatre historian,  Cezar Del Valle is celebrating 20 years of theatre talks and walks, 1996-2016. Currently accepting bookings for historical societies, libraries , senior centers, etc.  Details of independent walks will be published this fall.

Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.

Currently editing and updating the third edition of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, Volume I.

Selling  on Etsy and Amazon

 

 

 

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Jane Russell Underwater on Broadway

Film Bulletin, February 21, 1955:

underwater_pe

“RKO showmen, who have been promoting ‘Underwater’ in a great big way during recent weeks, really gave the Superscopic a smash ballyhoo by erecting the largest movie sign to light up Broadway in the past 10 years, covering two corner walls of the building housing the Mayfair Theatre.

“A 50-foot figure of Jane Russell is mounted on a colored background of ocean, 85 feet wide by 81 feet high. The famous form is hand-painted on lucite with dramatic lighting directed from behind.

“Construction of the mammoth spectacular  received extensive press breaks and coverage by TV and radio.

underwater_pe close up

 

“A striking comparison in size can be made as workman puts the finishing touches on La Russell’s lips.”

 

 

 

 

 

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.

Currently editing and updating the third edition of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, Volume I.

He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2016: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling  on Etsy and Amazon

Parthenon Theatre, 329 Wyckoff Avenue, Ridgewood

The Moving Picture Weekly, April 16, 1921:

April 16 1921_pe

“For the initial showing at the new $300,000 Parthenon Theatre in the Ridgewood section of Brooklyn*, N. Y., the Universal-Jewel, ‘Outside the Law,’ starring Priscilla Dean, was selected as the feature photoplay. The theatre is owned by Herman Weingarten and is one of the newer playhouses in Brooklyn.

“The theatre, which is located on the corner of Myrtle and Wyckoff avenues, has a seating capacity of 1600 people, and was opened for the first time to the public on February 26th.

“The general decoration scheme of the new playhouse is gold and old rose. There are large rest rooms for the women patrons, writing rooms and smoking rooms for the men, telephone booths and a promenade. A perfect view of the screen may be obtained from any seat in the house.”

Outside the Law 

*Situated on the border of two boroughs, the Parthenon was actually located in the Ridgewood section of Queens.

2013 theatre

The Parthenon building in 2013 (photo: Ken Roe)

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.

Currently editing and updating the third edition of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, Volume I.

He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2016: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling  on Etsy and Amazon

 

Rains Followed by Crowds at The Roxy, New York City, 1939

Motion Picture Herald, September 23, 1939:

Roxy 1_pe (Large)

Roxy 2_pe (Large)

“Crowds from here to way over there are jamming their way not into a bomb shelter, the publicity department of the New York Roxy theatre proudly points out, but into the theatre on the tenth day of Twentieth Century Fox’s ‘The Rains Came.’ The total attendance exceeded 250,000 on the 12th day of the run.”

The Rains Came

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.

Currently editing and updating the third edition of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, Volume I.

He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2016: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling  on Etsy and Amazon

New Marquee for the Paramount, New York

Showmen’s Trade Review, May 28, 1949:

paramount

“Flash and glamor increased, costs reduced by new marquee [below] on Paramount, New York, in which Adler changeable letters replace the former made-to-order electric displays (above).”

nyparamount

Golden Earrings

The Accused

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.
He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2015: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling  on Etsy and Amazon

Paradise Lost on Surf Avenue

 Sunday July 12, 2015, 11am
Cezar Del Valle, author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index Volume III, hosts the
cHURCH OF MONICA (Open Source Gallery) and discusses his new book about the history of Coney Island theatre.

Surf Avenue and West 17 Street, Coney Island

floodjohmstown

In 1906, the Johnstown Flood replaced by a new Herbert A. Bradwell production–The Deluge

deluge

Fredonia Censor, February 21, 1906:
“In it Mr. Bradwell undertakes no less a task than to portray in mechanical effect the great imagery of the Immortal  Milton, when in Book XI, ‘Paradise Lost,’ he describes ‘The Deluge.’ ”

The Deluge Scene II

The Deluge Scene II

Fredonia Censor, February 21, 1906:
“The big auditorium will be the same as the Johnstown Flood, but the stage will be largely increased. Real water, steam and electric current in great profusion will be used throughout and it is safe to say that the ‘Deluge’ will be one of the big talk creators at Coney Island next summer.”

The Deluge, Scene V

The Deluge, Scene V

Top Photo: Glimpses of the New Coney Island, 1904
Next Two: Staley’s Views of Coney Island, 1907

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.
He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2015: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling “vintage” on Etsy

Gangsters Fight Gangsters on the Streets of New York, 1939

From the Jackie Cooper obituary, The Guardian, May 5, 2011:
“By 1936, despite his popularity, Cooper had reached his teens, and MGM decided not to renew his contract. After leaving the glossiest of Hollywood studios, he went to Monogram , the poorest…”

Showmen’s Trade Review, June 3, 1939:

2015-05-13_095308_pe

“What’s playing today, please?”

“Whoever asked that question must be blind, for how could any normal person help but see this banner broadside, the poster cutouts, and the still blowups and catchlines the Globe Theatre on Broadway utilized for its attention-getting display on Monogram’s ‘Streets of New York.’

“Cooper proved a strong draw to initial World’s Fair  crowds.”

Streets of New York

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, a three-volume history of borough theatres. The first two chosen 2010 OUTSTANDING BOOK OF THE YEAR by the Theatre Historical Society. Final volume published in September 2014.

He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2015: historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc

Now selling “vintage” on Etsy