Back in the 1930s, Montreal’s cultural scene was very lively. Cabarets, movie houses and vaudeville theaters abounded and the nightlife was so renowned that people boarded trainsevery weekend from nearby provinces and states in order to join in on the fun. As the years passed, many of these beautiful venues closed down and they were either destroyed or they changed purposes. A few of these places have remained open and are being actively restored by owners who want to keep these architectural gems a part of Montreal’s past and present. Here are 5 beautiful Montreal cultural venues that will take you back to the 1930s.
Newsboy played by Daniel Burns. Photo Credit: Jeremy Daniel
Artist Cynthia Von Buhler’s latest endeavor might be the closest you can get to time travel. Speakeasy Dollhouse: The Brothers Booth, an interactive play exploring the Booth brothers’ sibling rivalry, will whisk you back to 1919—when Prohibition drove the parties underground but certainly didn’t stop them.
Von Buhler has explored this theme in the first iteration of the Speakeasy Dollhouse: the Bloody Beginning, which was inspired by the true story of her grandfather’s murder. This time, she has taken a quintessentially New York story and brought it to life in one of the City’s most coveted private Gilded Age clubs, the Players Club on Gramercy Park. (more…)
Times Square is home to over 30 theaters. These theaters can be awe-inspiring works of art and architecture. As a result, it is sad to think about Times Square’s opulent theaters that have either been nearly gutted or completely demolished. One former theater, which is overlooked by most who visit the area, lies in the middle of that spectrum.
Until recently, the former Loew’s Mayfair Theater was a souvenir store that incorporated some of the theater’s detailing. The store went out of business and so far nothing new has opened in its place. Ideally, its new occupant will restore the interior decorations and display them more prominently, as recently happened with the former I. Miller Shoe Store. (more…)
Cynthia von Buhler at the Players Club. Photo Credit: Maxine Nienow
What if John Wilkes Booth really assassinated Lincoln because of a sibling rivalry? The Brothers Booth, a new interactive play by Cynthia Von Buhler, creator of the Speakeasy Dollhouse: The Bloody Beginning, will explore that possibility. Spectators will be encouraged to play along, observing the action and piecing together the clues as they explore The Players Club, founded by Edwin Booth in 1888. The Brothers Booth is a fantasy based on a number of truths about Edwin and his infamous brother, John Wilkes Booth. We met up with von Buhler at the Players Club to find out more about the play, which opens in March. (more…)
The Park Theater was the first major New York City theater to open on Park Row by City Hall in 1798. The building plan was done by the architect of the Themes tunnel in London, Mark Isambard Brunel. The three-story stone structure seated an audience of 2,000. It opened with Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” on January 29, 1798, even though the theater was in an unfinished state. Tickets cost 50 cents.
New York City is full of interesting and unique theaters. We have previously explored some of the City’s offerings including the Loew’s Valencia Theater in Jamaica, which is currently a church and the former Berkshire Theater in Sunset Park, which is currently a mosque. Today, we bring you 10 theaters that can be found along Broadway, in Upper Manhattan, most of which possess only a specter of their former glory.