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Glendale Theatres

A wander through the theatres of Glendale --

The Alex is the surviving gem of Glendale, the last evidence of a once thriving theatre district. Theatres started popping up in the 1910s, mostly on Brand Blvd., and that street was still the Valley's theatre district into the 80s when multiplexes started replacing the many single screen theatres.

Many of the theatres used multiple names over their lives. The bottom of the San Fernando Valley Theatres survey page has an alternate name list that includes these Glendale theatres.

It might also be helpful to consult the San Fernando Valley: theatres by address page to see what was on a particular street in the Valley.

Americana Way
| Pacific Glendale 18 |

Atwater Village
| Atwater Theatre |

Brand Blvd. 
| Alex Theatre | California Theatre | Capitol Theatre | Cosmo Theatre | Glendale Marketplace 4 | Glendale Theatre - 1920 | Pacific Glendale 18 | Palace Grand | Roxy Theatre | Sands / Regency One | Studio Movie Grill | Temple Theatre | Vogue Theatre |

Broadway
| Glendale Theatre - 1910 | Majestic Theatre |

Central Ave. 
| Tuesday Afternoon Club / Villa Glen Theatre

Colorado St.
| Bard's Glendale / Glen Theatre |

Maryland Ave. / Artsakh Ave.
| Hide Away Theatre | Exchange 10 / Studio Movie Grill |

Orange St.
| Glendale Centre Theatre | Glendale Cinemas |
 
Pacific Ave.
| Hearthside Theatre

San Fernando Rd. 
| Gateway Theatre |

Verdugo Rd. 
| Glendale Civic Auditorium |



Alex Theatre
216 N. Brand Blvd.

This 1,413 seat house opened in 1925 as the Alexander Theatre, a project of C.L. Langley. The Greek Revival design was by Arthur G. Lindley and Charles R. Selkirk. After decades of operation by Fox West Coast and its successor companies, it closed in 1996 and got a restoration in 1992-93. Now a performing arts center operated by Glendale Arts, it hosts a wide variety of attractions. For more information see the pages on the Alex: history + street views | forecourt | lobby areas | auditorium | booth + atticbackstage |

Atwater Theatre
3183 Glendale Blvd. Atwater Village

This house run by bandleader Harry Owens was decorated in a Hawaiian style with murals depicting mountains, waterfalls and beach scenes. It opened in 1941 and was running into the 50s. It's now retail space and an artists studio. The 2012 photo of the building as the Pampered Birds store is from Google Maps. For more information see the page about the Atwater Theatre.

California Theatre
341 N. Brand Blvd.

This 1928 vintage theatre was part of a building at Brand and Lexington that also included the California Hotel. The late 20s image is a detail from a photo in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. Seating was 772 with about a third of those in a balcony. It survived into the mid-1950s and then got turned into a furniture store. There's now a newer building on the site. For more information see the page about the California Theatre.

Capitol Theatre
139 S. Brand Blvd.

It opened in 1930 as Young's Capitol with the biggest neon illuminated marquee in Glendale. The 808 seat house was later operated by Fox West Coast and ended up with United Artists as the UA Capitol. Thanks to David T for his 1978 photo. It closed in the late 80s after years of deferred maintenance. Demolition came following damage in the 1994 Northridge earthquake. For more information see the page about Capitol Theatre

Cosmo Theatre
730 S. Brand Blvd.

This 688 seat house opened in 1925. In the early 40s it was joined by the Vogue right across the street, both operated by Grover Smith. Thanks to Rick Roessler for the 30s kid's matinee photo. The theatre ran until 1951. It's been demolished and replaced by a BMW dealership. For more information see the page about the Cosmo Theatre.

Gateway Theatre
3731 San Fernando Rd.

This 912 seat house with an Egyptian interior opened in 1923 a block or so north of Brand Blvd. The "Watch For Opening" photo appears in the terrific 2008 Arcadia Publishing book "Theatres in Los Angeles" by Suzanne Tarbell Cooper, Amy Ronnebeck Hall and Marc Wanamaker. It's not known who the architect was. In the 40s and 50s it was operated by Fox West Coast and was running as late as 1956. It's been demolished. For more information see the page about the Gateway Theatre.

Glen Theatre
1014 E. Colorado St.

This 844 seat house opened in 1925 as Bard's Theatre, also known as Bard's Glendale. Kenneth Gordon was the architect. The photo is from the Los Angeles Public Library collection. When Fox West Coast took over the operation it was called the Glen Theatre. After closing in the 60s it was a bowling alley and then a restaurant. It's now a banquet hall called Palladio. For more information see the page on the Glen Theatre.

Glendale Centre Theatre 
324 N. Orange St.

This legit operation began in 1947 as the Hale Centre Theatre, a project of Nathan and Ruth Hale. It's been family operated ever since. The current 380 seat in-the-round location has been the company's home since around 1969. The producing company, the building, and an adjacent parking lot are now looking for a buyer. The 2019 image is from Google Maps. For more information see the page about the Glendale Centre Theatre.

Glendale Cinemas
501 N. Orange St.

This 5 theatre complex was opened in 1991 as the General Cinema Glendale Central Cinema. Beginning in 2002 AMC ran it for several months following the General Cinema bankruptcy. Later it was an independent operation. It's also been known as the Glendale Central 5 and the Glendale Cinemas. Thanks to Scott Neff for his 2002 photo. When it closed in 2004 the space was converted to office use. For more information see the page about the Glendale Cinemas.

Glendale Civic Auditorium
1401 N. Verdugo Rd.

This two-level facility was built as a WPA project in 1938. The main space has a flat floor plus a stage with fly capability. The basement has a ballroom space and a kitchen area. The photo is one from the City of Glendale collection. For more information see the page on the Glendale Civic Auditorium.

Glendale Marketplace 4
144 S. Brand Blvd.

The complex opened in 1998 as the Mann Glendale Marketplace 4. The photo dates from 2007. Mann ran it until 2011 when the owners of the circuit were winding up the business and dropping leases. It was reopened in 2012 as the Galaxy Glendale Marketplace. The complex closed in the summer of 2014 and was gutted to become an L.A. Fitness location. For more information see the page about the Glendale Marketplace 4.

Glendale Theatre
520 E. Broadway

This first Glendale Theatre was running by 1910 with an original address of 702-04 W. Broadway when this stretch of the street was using the Tropico numbering system. The address changed when Glendale annexed the town in 1918. It appears the theatre may have closed a year before that. Thanks to Dallas Movie Theaters for finding the trade magazine photo. The building survived with other tenants until after the 1971 Sylmar earthquake. For more information see the page about this first Glendale Theatre.

Glendale Theatre
122 S. Brand Blvd.

This theatre, the second in town to use the Glendale name, opened in 1920 with 1,231 seats. It was a design by Alfred F. Priest, who also did the Tuesday Afternoon Club. It got a stage and dressing room expansion in 1924, a remodel by Clifford Balch in 1939, and a twinning in 1980. Thanks to Stacie Inkel for the 1981 photo. Long operated by West Coast Theatres and its successor companies, it was under the Mann banner when it closed in 1990. The Marketplace complex is on the site. For more information see the page about the Glendale Theatre.

Hearthside Theatre
232 S. Pacific Ave.

There's no real data about this one yet except that it was listed under "theatres" in the Glendale city directories for 1951, 1953 and 1954. Pacific is three blocks west of Brand Blvd. The theatre was located on the east side of the street a block north of Colorado St. For more information see the page about the Hearthside Theatre.

Hide Away Theatre
102 S. Maryland Ave.

This little house was on what is now called Artsakh Ave. just south of Broadway. It was running in the early 50s but opening and closing dates are unknown. It's the second building from the corner in this view south on Maryland from Andre de Toth's 1954 Warner Bros. film "Crime Wave." There's now a new building on the site. For more information see the page about the Hide Away Theatre.

Majestic Theatre
115 W. Broadway

This theatre opened in 1912 on the north side of the street between Brand and what is now called Artsakh Ave. This stretch of Broadway at the time was using the numbering system of the town of Tropico so the address would have been 1105 W. It was perhaps running only until 1916 or 1917. The building survives in a very remodeled fashion, given a new facade along with several adjacent structures. For more information see the page about the Majestic Theatre.

Pacific Glendale 18
322 Americana Way

This complex at Rick Caruso's Americana at Brand shopping center opened in 2008. It's on the west side of Brand between Colorado St. and Broadway. Thanks to Scott Campbell on Cinema Tour for the 2008 photo. For more information see the page about the Pacific Glendale 18.

Palace Grand Theatre
131 N. Brand Blvd.

This one opened in 1914 as Jensen's Palace Grand, a 900 seat house. The 1920 photo is in the Los Angeles Public Library collection. Later it was the T.D. & L. Theatre, operated by Turner, Dahnken & Langley, a group of theatres soon absorbed into West Coast Theatres. The final act appears to have been around 1928 when it was called the Lincoln Theatre. For more information see the page about the Palace Grand

Roxy Theatre
417 N. Brand Blvd.

This 800 seat house opened c.1938. Initially operated by Grover Smith, later it was run by Century, Statewide, Loew's, SRO and Pacific. Thanks to Meredith Jacobson Marciano for her 1980 photo. The house closed in 1995 and is now a banquet hall called Stars on Brand. For more information see the page about the Roxy Theatre.

Sands Theatre
210 S. Brand Blvd.

It opened in 1963 as the Sands, a independent operation, with about 800 seats. Pacific Theatres got it in 1985 and renamed it the Regency 1. Down the block was the Regency 2, the former Temple Theatre/U.S. Cinema. The 1991 photo is by Gary Graver. Closing of the Regency One was in 1994. It's now a banquet hall. For more information see the page on the Sands Theatre.

Studio Movie Grill
128 N. Artsakh Ave.

It opened in 1991 as the Mann Exchange 8, part of a complex with an entrance on Brand but the theatres back a block on what was then called Maryland Ave. In 1996 two more screens were added. Mann exited in 2011 and 8 of the screens were taken over by Vintage Cinemas as the Glendale Exchange 8. Later it was a dine-in venture called MGN Five Star Cinema. In 2019 it became part of the Studio Movie Grill chain. Thanks to Laura Medina for her photo. For more information see the page about the Studio Movie Grill.

Temple Theatre
234 S. Brand Blvd.

The 707 seat ground floor theatre space was in Glendale's Masonic Temple, a building completed in 1929 that was designed by Arthur G. Lindley of the firm Lindley and Selkirk. They had earlier done the Alex, a few blocks up the street. This one wasn't opened as a commercial theatre until 1937. The 1938 image is a detail from a Dick Whittington photo in the USC collection. In the 80s the theatre was known as the U.S. Cinema. When Pacific took over in 1985 it became the Regency 2. It closed in 1991. The building was rehabbed in 2015. For more information see the page about the Temple Theatre.  

Villa Glen Theatre
404 N. Central Ave.

The building opened in 1923 as the home of the Tuesday Afternoon Club, a social and charitable organization that had been founded in 1898. The early photo is from the Los Angeles Public Library. In addition to the 900 seat theatre, there were also offices, a kitchen and meeting and banquet rooms. The theatre space over the years was also known as the Glendale Playhouse, Show Shop Theatre and the Arcade Theatre. The last films were run in 1976 with demolition of the building in 1977. For more information see the page on the Villa Glen.

Vogue Theatre
735 S. Brand Blvd.

This 735 seat house opened in 1941, a design by Paul Hartman. It was leased by Grover Smith, who also had the Cosmo across the street. The 1949 image is a detail from a photo from the Alan Weeks collection. The Vogue was running until around 1955. Lately the remodeled building has been part of a Nissan dealership. For more information see the page on the Vogue Theatre.

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