5. Candler Theater
Photo from Library of Congress.
Rather than just looking like an office building from the outside, Candler Theater was actually inside of a five-story office building on West Forty-second Street. The outside of the theater was lacking in pizazz but the Italian Renaissance-style theater with its elliptical dome and use of marble made the inside look larger than life.
The Candler remained a live theater from 1914 to 1933 with varying degrees of success. It only took two years for Candler Theater to be renamed Cohan and Harris Theater when the Candler family, (the creators of Coca-Cola) leased it out. It was renamed Harris Theatre shortly after and it finally made its mark when John Barrymore played Hamlet for the 101st night in a row, beating out Edwin Booth’s previous record of 100 nights.
The final performance at Harris Theatre lacked success and the theater was turned into a movie theater while it was slowly stripped of its iconic interior. The Harris Movie Theatre functioned until 1994 when it closed. It was demolished in 1996 to make way for the Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum much to the dismay of protestors who had hoped it would be restored to a performance theater again like the New Amsterdam Theatre was.