Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Remember the Loew's State!

Well, I can't since it went out of business before my time.

But many others have memories tied to this and other downtown theaters.

At the Loew's, hundreds turned out on Oct. 15, 1927, for its grand opening. The theater was the first to open since the death of Marcus Loew, founder of the theater chain.

Sounds from a Robert Morton organ played "Yesterday" as patrons entered the theater sometime after noon. Employees dressed in Colonial attire presented Martha Washington chocolates to guests, too.

The day's feature, "Annie Laurie" starring Lillian Gish, began at 12:30 p.m. Five vaudeville acts featuring singer Margaret Young also entertained visitors that day.

"We didn't plan any elaborate opening ceremonies because we believe it best to treat the public to the regular type entertainment at the beginning and not open with a program we can't expect to continue," a spokesman for Loew's said.

The Loew's State, designed by Texas architect Alfred Charles Finn, closed on Oct. 15, 1972, and was soon demolished.

(Photo taken from the 1998 Houston Theater Memories calendar, part of the Bob Bailey Collection.)

UPDATE: Download your own "Save this Landmark" sign here.

The petition to save the Alabama and River Oaks theater/shopping center can be found here.



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