Whiteside Theatre Photo Tour
We start with some old photos:
For several years the Whiteside marquee hosted the downtown Christmas tree:
Some views of the marquee at night:
Under the marquee:
The front entrance:
Looking right to the east end of
The lobby carpet through the late 1990s - it has similar features to the oldest surviving one, which we will see in the mezzanine:
A closer look at the detailed metalwork that holds the curtains:
The lobby light fixtures - four views:
Looking left to the west end of the lobby. You can see the curtain metalwork and the light fixture that were just shown in detail, as well as the lobby mirror and alcove lights:
A closer view. The posters visible on the right are covering windows into the auditorium. The west-end exit doors are also visible.
The light fixture reflected in the ornate lobby mirror:
One of the alcove lights:
We go up the stairs to the mezzanine. Note that the medallion has blue and red accents on the gold (seen also in the auditorium). As with the chandelier medallion, this medallion once had goldelements painted on the ceiling (now painted over).
A detailed view of the medallion:
The mezzanine windows by day, after the drapes had been removed:
The two end mirrors in the mezzanine lounge reflect into one another infinite times.
The oldest carpet. The decor of the whole theatre reflects it elements; most notably, the oak leaf. Compare to the present lobby carpet, shown previously.
The Ladies Lounge, with its large mirror and beautiful arched window. The Men's Lounge has no real decoration, but has a long built-in wooden bench.
Up another flight of stairs to the balcony, then up another flight to the projection booth. Note the large cast iron dimmers, and the bank of knife switches (yellow) for the auditorium lights. The projector is to the immediate left, out of the picture.
The original Vitagraph sound system, where a record player was synced to the film for the sound:
The view of and out the projection-booth window:
The auditorium, wide view:
And a view from the side:
The garden lights (lower part), and the organ bays (upper). This is the east gardens only; they are mirrored on the west side. The upper portions held the organ pipes when the organ was still in the theatre.
Also, The grill feature of the bay was mirrored on the other side, closer to the screen, making three symmetric bays. The ones closest to the screen were removed to accommodate a wider screen for
Cinemascope in the 1950s.
Organ bay detail:
Detail of the garden box pillars:
Two of the pilaster features in the auditorium. Note the blue and red colors were also seen in the mezzanine ceiling medallion.
A view of the cove above the proscenium. The chandelier and ceiling medallion are also visible.
Detail of the cove, with the stencils in gold paint.
Views of the chandelier and medallion. For scale, the chandelier is about 5 feet in diameter.
In the left view below, you can see clearly the metallic gold paint used in the medallion stencil. Note also again the repeating use of the red and blue.
A slightly angled view shows the chandelier hanging below the medallion and latticework:
A detail of the chandelier, note the use again of the oak leaf:
A view from behind (above) the ceiling medallion lattice. Note the carefully crumpled Mike & Ike box on the floor, itself quite likely
having sat there long enough to be of historical interest.
Looking back towards the lobby from the front of the auditorium. The east side of the lobby is visible through the windows and aisle door.
The same view using a flash. You can see the light rail at the top of the picture. The light rail has several (6 or 7) 1000W lights
to provide a bright wash of light across the stage. These are used for live performances and special events.
Closer views of the under-the-balcony auditorium lights:
A brief detour to the roof for a quick photo of the front facade from above:
The front facade:
A closer view:
Detail of one of the arched windows:
Detail of the face and egg and dart features on the cornice:
Below the face is the prominent 1950s neon marquee:
We can swing around to 4th Street for a view of the entire building:
If we pull back even further we can see the building in its surroundings:
Moving down 4th Street we can see the west facade. The door on the left leads to the basement. The double doors come off of the stage. Note also the old
coal chute (round; ground-level), which was the primary source of heat in the past.
Heading south again on 4th, we can see the original exterior lamps:
A view of the Whiteside sign from 4th Street:
A view of the corner of the building from below the Whiteside sign:
And we're back to where we started, looking at the mosaic of tiles next to the box office:
Here's a few pictures of some neat things that happened at the Whiteside over 85 years:
A piece of World War II history:
A janitor, who lived in the basement during the 1940s, drew on the walls there.
Each pair of views shows an original and an enhanced photo:
The lobby projector is fixed up to show a movie on the wall:
A special message is put on the marquee:
For the record, she said "Yes!"
Photo tour created by Michael Conrad
Some photos used by permission of the owner