|The now landmarked Ridgewood Theatre facade is a classic from its 1916 Vaudeville days, but the ornate interior is now in jeopardy of demolition. Theaters were designed as a complete package, so don't surrender the goods!|
|The ornate lobby featuring angelic muses, domes, and a grand staircase.|
|Cameos featuring angels playing instruments, and more Greek Revival detail, adorns the lobby and other parts of this theatrical treasure!|
Friends of The Ridgewood Theatre has learned that plans to convert the Ridgewood Theatre (55-27 Myrtle Ave) to a performing arts center have failed after the owners gave up, and have sold it to franchisee Tony Guzman of Associated Supermarket. All hope is not abandoned, and we feel the need for a compromise. We are in the process of calling for a meeting with the new owner.
We respectfully request the owner to:
1. Preserve and restore the theater's rare 1916 interior Adamesque architecture by America's foremost theater architect Thomas Lamb, such as a rare backlit proscenium, balustrades, and ornate plaster detail in the auditorium (treasures unveiled after multiplex removal), as well as angelic muses, domes, and a grand staircase in the lobby;
2. Utilize funding opportunities such as historic grants and tax credits, if the interior was creatively adaptively reused rather than demolished, along the lines of other sites locally and citywide that underwent a successful parallel conversion. Case studies include theater and bank sites;
3. Be receptive of concerns of the greater community, and realize the extensive history reflected in remaining site features, and also realize the great rapport he will gain if working cooperatively with locals, preservation groups, and elected officials;
4. Lease at least 2 floors as community and performance spaces, to reflect the building's potential, and the adjacent neighborhoods' growing arts community, while boosting revenue at the site.
We won landmark status for the facade in January 2010, but the interior's rare ornate features dating to its Vaudeville & silent film days merit preservation most significantly. For questions, advice, and to volunteer given the theater's newly endangered status, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Ridgewood Theatre facade designation report
Landmarking Petition Drive
Join the Facebook Group for the Ridgewood Theatre!
Ridgewood Theatre interior & facade photos on Flickr
Friends of The Ridgewood Theatre, Chair
Rego-Forest Preservation Council, Chair
Four Borough Neighborhood Preservation Alliance, Queens VP
Queens Preservation Council & Central Queens Historical Association, Bd. of Dir.