Buy Palace Theatre Albany Tickets
Palace Theatre Albany Tickets
The newly refurbished Palace Theatre was graced by the entertaining performance of the Irish dancers. In the final months of 2002 one of Albany's treasures was treated to its first phase in recreating its beauty and glory which first burst upon the scene in 1931. The official rededication took place on January 16, 2003 with world famous cellist, YoYoMa playing with the Albany Symphony Orchestra.
Palace Theatre Albany Tickets Information
In 1930, RKO theatres under the Radio-Keith-Orpheum organization decided to build a "palace" at the corner of Clinton Avenue and North Pearl Street. Formerly, this place was occupied by John Battersby's meat market. Construction began in June 1930 and was completed by October 1931. The new Palace included a seating capacity of just under 4,000 - listed as the third largest in the world at that time. It was "done in Austrian baroque architecture" designed by architect John Eberson. The center chandelier contained 375 light bulbs, the stage 68 by 42 feet. It was to employ 100 men and women, of those 40 were ushers.
The Theatre became very famous due to its enchanting beauty and the high quality artistic work.The beauty of the theatre was described as including "paneled walls, gold and tapestried with the utmost taste in blending". "The murals, splendid works of art. Paintings by Andrew Karoly of the school of Fine Arts and Jules Zartot of Budapeat, Hungary."
The popularity of the theatre went on increasing not only in Albany but also the surrounding communities. During the thirties, forties and into the fifties going to the Palace to see the largest movies as well as variety and big production stage show were high on the list for many. Movies such as GONE WITH THE WIND, SNOW WHITE, A FAREWELL TO ARMS, and many favorites of that period were first seen at The Palace. To go down town to the movies on Friday nights, plus the weekends was a major form of entertainment. Quite often a line to the box office would extend over North Pearl Street.
As for stage productions the major "big bands" appeared such as Tommey Dorsey, Gene Krupa, Duke Ellington, Woody Herman and Benny Goodman. Included on the vaudeville menu were many of the top vocal artists of those days.
In the mid 1940's it was legislated that producing motion picture studios such as R.K.O. could not own the theatres where the films were shown. Thus entered the Fabian Corporation which acquired many movie houses including The Palace under Fabian Theatres, the late Alex Sayles was appointed manager with Bill serving as assistant.
A decision was made in 1960 to put a modernization plan into play. It included replacing the original marquee as well as removing a number of seats to make it more comfortable for the audience. New stage draperies in gold and blue were installed and the interior received a new paint job.
Within the last several years Mayor Gerald Jennings wished to embrace the Palace to be the anchor of the north end of Albany's down-town entertainment district; the south anchor, The Pepsi Arena. To that end in 2002 plans came to fruition to privatize the building and begin a three phase renovation to bring the beautiful historic theatre back to its resplendent glory as it first appeared at its opening on October 23, 1931. The summer of 2003 will see further renovations including the recreation of original magnificent marquee. Once again The Palace will become a place for entertainment to be enjoyed by the people of Albany and surrounding communities.
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