Albany's Palace Theatre is your one-stop shop in the Capital Region for world class performances, concerts, plays, private events, and more. It prides itself on being a cultural landmark in the heart of downtown Albany. It hosts over 150 events per year and has featured greats such as Jerry Seinfeld, the Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Roy Orbison, Tony Bennett and more.
If you haven't visited The Palace Theatre, here's what you're missing out on.
History of The Palace Theatre
Open since October 1931, The Palace Theatre has been providing entertainment to Albany and the surrounding communities since the middle of the Great Depression. Upon its grand opening, it was the biggest theatre among a sea of opulent movie houses. Over the years, though, people frequented movie theaters less often because of the increasing usage of televisions inside homes. It ultimately had to close its doors in 1969 despite enormous efforts to renovate.
Shortly after its closure, the city of Albany purchased The Palace for $90,000 for use as a civic auditorium. It reached national historical status in 1979 when it was placed on the National Register of Historic Palaces. After much renovation in 2002 and 2003, including an LED marquee replica of the original, it strengthened its position as an entertainment hotspot. In fact, its currently an annual home to the Albany Symphony Orchestra.
Designed by legendary theatre designer John Eberson, The Palace Theatre boasts an ornate Austrian Baroque design made famous in the 1920s. During the Roaring Twenties, "atmospheric theaters" were all the rage. Eschewing the traditional boxlike, formal setting of movie theaters, the atmospheric style featured auditorium-style ceilings. What really made this type of movie palace stand out was their penchant for their lavish design, often imitating exotic European courtyards, gardens, or village squares. The intention was to make a patron as comfortable as possible in a seemingly foreign and extravagant space.
The Palace Theatre, despite its age, retains most original design features such as its ornate brass chandeliers and stunning murals painted by Andrew Karoly of the School of Fine Arts in Budapest and Jules Zarrol of Hungary. Its rich crimson drapes trimmed with gold fringe frames the stage making it a treat to visit.
Kinderhook Bank Movie Series
Although The Palace Theatre often hosts world-renowned artists, it also partners with local community establishments to provide family-friendly events like the Kinderhook Bank Movie Series. The Bank sponsors the movie series which screens classics, comedies, and more. Check out February 2016's movie schedule:
- 2/1 - The Three Stooges Film Fest
- 2/17 - Frozen
- 2/22 - The Princess Bride
For more information on the Palace Theatre or its upcoming events, visit their website.