Coney Island Ask the Experts

Coney Island USA Events

Saturday, August 6, 5:00 pm

Ask The Experts:

Cezar Del Valle
Author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index Volume III

In this lively presentation, Del Valle explores a forgotten aspect of Coney Island history–theatre.
He will discuss not only the architecture, of which very few buildings are still extant, but also the entertainment culture going back to the late 1800s.

Talk is Included with Museum Admission. $5 for Adults,
$3 for Seniors, Kids (under 12) and residents of Zip Code 11224, at the door.

Coney Island Museum

1208 Surf Avenue

Brooklyn, New York 11224

Email: museum@coneyisland.com

Review of January 2015 talk

0031` loew's
Loew’s Coney Island

 

Legendary theatre historian,  Cezar Del Valle 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

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

 

 

 

Theatre Walks 2014-2015

Award winning author, Cezar Del Valle has had many years of experience developing and leading walking tours of New York’s theatrical and cultural districts.

Mindful of the budgetary constraints facing most non-profits, Del Valle is willing to discuss fees.

Yiddish Walk.jpg.

January 8, 2012 walking tour for the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP)
“Your amount of historic knowledge was nothing short of incredible”
-Dana Schulz, Program and Administrative Associate, GVSHP

Times Square:
Explore the “Crossroads of the World” to discover some of the lesser known sites along the “Great White Way.”

Lower East Side:
Five walks are available of New York City’s former melting pot of the immigrant working class.

Introductory Walk(s)
Three tours offer a basic introduction to the neighborhood’s showbiz past from immigrant theatre to off-off-Broadway and early television.

Yiddish Rialto
Stroll Second Avenue as Del Valle relates tales of Adler, Picon, Thomashefsky and other greats of the Yiddish stage.

Bowery
The colorful, salty history of the Bowery, once alive with Yiddish, Italian and Chinese theatres, vaudeville houses, dime museums, concert saloons and early film venues.

Downtown Brooklyn:
A former hub of theatrical activity, downtown Brooklyn is currently enjoying a rebirth with the development of the new BAM Cultural District.

Coney Island:
Del Valle invites you to Brooklyn’s “Sodom by the Sea” where Gary Grant walked on stilts, Harpo Marx made his stage début and where the music halls ran early & late.

Visit our Theatre Talks website for information and reviews.

Above photo copyright Betty Sword, all rights reserved.

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Book of the year by the Theatre Historical Society. 

Lower East Side Preservation Initiative’s Moveable Feast

Lower East Side Preservation Initiative

An Afternoon on The Lower East Side
Sunday May 18, 2014

Part One: Tour the Bowery
2:00-4:00 pm
with theatre historian Cezar Del Valle
Meet in front of the Liz Christy Garden, Bowery and Houston Street

The Bowery entertainment district was once bursting with Yiddish, Chinese and Italian Theatres, vaudeville houses, early film venues, dime museums, and concert saloons. Explore this colorful, earthy history with theatre historian Cezar Del Valle.

Admission: $20 LESPI Members: $15

New York Public Digital Collection
New York Public Library Digital Collection
Part Two:

 LUNCH AT AN HISTORIC GREEK-AMERICAN SYNAGOGUE  

4:00 – 6:00 pm

At the Kehila Janina Kedosha synagogue, a New York City Landmark, enjoy  a delicious lunch of traditional Greek-Jewish kosher yaprakes, bourekas, kourlouia, Greek salad, seasonal fruit, hot and cold beverages.
Tour the beautifully restored 1927 synagogue interior, and visit the synagogue’s fascinating museum on the history of the congregation and Greek American Jewish life.

Meet  at: Kehila Janina Kedosha Synagogue at 280 Broome St, between EldrIdge and Allen Streets
 
Admission: $25
LESPI and Synagogue members $20
 
SPECIAL COMBINED TOUR AND LUNCH EVENT PRICE: $40   
LESPI MEMBERS: $30
Info@LESPI-nyc.org with any questions.

This program is part of Lower East Side History Month 

 
 
Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Best Book of the Year by the Theatre Historical Society.
 
He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2014, historical societies, libraries, senior centers, etc.

Santa visits the Embassy Theatre, 347 Main Street, Orange, NJ

Motion Picture News, January 7, 1928:

motionnew37moti_0053_pe (Medium)“Christmas time at the Embassy theatre is the time for hanging up stockings and the kiddies of Orange, East Orange, West Orange and other suburbs bring their stockings to the Embassy, where they are hung in the lobby.

[Richard R.] Reilly [manager] inaugurated his idea as early as November 26. On that day, at the Saturday matinee performance, he told the kiddies of the coming of Santa Claus to the Embassy and he emphasized the fact  the following Saturday. The children came and brought their stockings, which were left with ushers  who gave the children a number and took their names.

“The stockings were then hung in the lobby with the number of the child placed on each stocking so that attending kiddies always could pick out their stocking, show them to companions and to parents.

“Every Saturday meant a holiday for the children. As they came into the theatre they saw Santa Claus filling up various stockings. This until Saturday, December 24, when the last stocking was filled. So great was the response from the children that on Saturday, December 3, the day set for the bringing of the stockings, there were 2,397 kiddies at the matinee. The number of stockings brought during the period was 1,227.

“The sight in the Embassy lobby and foyer was a picturesque one. The stockings, filled with presents, were returned to the kiddies on Saturday, December 24, which coincided nicely with Christmas Eve., Reilly placed in several of the stockings season passes to the Embassy.

“He further ingratiated himself with the children by having the children who received season passes report to him every Saturday matinee before the theatre was opened.

“The manager took these children into his office, showed them the activities going on before a theatre is opened to the public, got their reactions to pictures and did everything to make them happy.”

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Best Book of the year by the Theatre Historical Society.

He is available for theatre talks and walks in 2014.

 

Paris Theatre, 4 W. 58th St., New York, NY 10019

Paris Theatre

Excerpts from the Architectural Forum, January 1949:

“Manhattan’s first new postwar motion picture house is, besides an excellent design, an uncharted venue in real estate and movie merchandising.”

“Sponsored by the French Pathe syndicate in an effort to up its U.S. take (now lower than in South America’s pint size Columbia), the cinema restricts its fare to special films, caters to an uptown audience of the cultivated and well-heeled.”

tumblr_lnptzgmm7w1qg5w2e“Fifth Avenue Association, fearful of garish Broadway lights, dictated modest sign front.”

wallpaper“Steinberg mural wallpaper showing scenes of Paris adds interest to simple room.”

auditorium“Series of curves provides top visual and acoustical performance. Upholstered seats are spaced 35-40 in. between rows.”

Paris Theatre

Photograph, Paris Theatre June 8, 2011,  copyright Betty Sword, all rights reserved.

Architectural Forum article part of the Theatre Talks Collection

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Best Book of the year by the Theatre Historical Society.

He is available for theatre talks in 2013-2014.

Palais Garnier, 8 Rue Scribe, 75009 Paris, France

Designed by Charles Garnier, the 1,979 seat opera house opened with a lavish gala performance on January 5, 1875.

Opera

 

Excerpts from Daily Graphic, New York, September, September 19, 1874:

”The great pile occupies an entire square, as large as that occupied by our new public buildings. Its main front, indeed, all its fronts, constitute a variety of architecture and statuary beyond description: Inside all these wonders increase.

The space allotted to the stage, the dressing rooms, rooms or studios for the artists, reception rooms, machine rooms, machine shops, with the endless devices for scenery, seem to be more than half the entire area; and as you gaze into this mysterious combination, the auditorium looks comparatively small, even with its tier after tier of boxes and its sweeping corridors

Some idea of this immense edifice may be gathered from the size of the saloon, or foyer, a rectangular hall over 160 feet long and forty feet high. It is lighted by day by five windows looking into the boulevard, and in the night by a bewildering array of chandeliers.”

“The panels they were to fill, the spaces for the mirrors, the lofty and wide spreading ceilings, the walls, the very floors, conveyed an idea of vastness, heightened by the gorgeous decorations in bronzes and gold, in mosaic and fresco, in marble and other products of French and foreign quarries. I forbear an estimate of what this palace of music will accommodate or what it costs, but its acoustic capacity seems to have passed judgement.”

“Work on it was arrested, of course, during the siege and the Commune, and it was several times in danger, but the present Government has given it an immense appropriation to finish it by January.”

 

The Daily Courier, Onondaga, New York, November 19, 1874:

“The chandelier for the middle of the Paris Opera House will be a marvel in its way. It will cost $8,000.”

 

Excerpts from the Deaf Mutes’ Journal, April 29, 1875:

“The French government proposes to establish a school of mosaic decorations at Serves. Such a school was actually established by Napoleon I, with the object not only of naturalizing a beautiful and useful art in France, but also of assisting an unfortunate class, the workmen employed being all deaf and dumb. But since 1830 nothing has been heard of it.”

“The fact that one of the most intersting and original conceptions of the architect of the Paris Opera-house was executed by Italian artists has been the means of reviving this plan for a school of mosaic decorations. The original idea will be carried out so far that pupils showing a taste for the art, will first be sought at the Deaf and Dumb Institution.”

 

Postcard is part of the Theatre Talks collection, please ask permission to copy and/or use.
At least give credit to source. We know that some people will not honor this but it would be nice if they did.

Cezar Del Valle is the author of the Brooklyn Theatre Index, chosen 2010 Best Book of the Year by the Theatre Historical Society .
He is currently available for theatre walks and talks in 2013.