Comments from cameocenter

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cameocenter commented about Cameo Center on Jun 27, 2008 at 6:30 pm

the cultural affairs booklet is wrong. the Cameo was built in 1940

cameocenter commented about New Laurel Theater on May 18, 2005 at 2:52 pm

I tried to buy the Laurel in the early eighties. I was going to adaptively reuse it into lofts, but the owners were adamant about tearing it down so they could get their taxes lowered. Another treasure lost.

cameocenter commented about Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center on May 18, 2005 at 2:47 pm

from the Cameo Theatre Corporation: We bought our “west side sister” in 1980 to prevent it from being demolished. It was in pretty bad repair, but the city was interested in seeing the area revitalized and so we put it in a private developer’s hands to redevelop for the city. After a period (maybe 10 years?)the city got title to the property and it has been a very vital part of the Avenida Guadalupe Project.

cameocenter commented about Cameo Center on May 18, 2005 at 2:25 pm

From the Cameo Theatre Corporation: We have owned the building since the late seventies. It was built as the city’s first and only theatre for black audiences in 1940. The street was renumbered in the ‘60s when the interstate 37 went in, so both sets of building addresses are correct for their respective dates. The Cameo was built with both a vaudeville stage and theatre screen, as vaudeville had not yet died in the South. Louis Armstrong, Fats Domino, B.B. King performed there in the early years. They also had “bread night” and “china night” with giveaways for each ticketholder. After the theatre closed it was turned into a porno theatre, then a Temple of Islam. It opened as a live theatre in 1980, and has been in mostly continuous operation since. More recent performers have been Metallica, Guns 'n’ Roses, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Susan Vega, and Stan Getz. The interior has been refurbished with the main color being deep burgundy, into the Art Deco Egyptian style. There was actually very little left of the interior, so it has been decorated in that style as a supposition of what might have been. Long time patrons have said it is fancier now than when it was built. The theatre is now an event facility that can be rented for private receptions, screenings, conventions and the like. The adjacent building has also been restored to its 1908 glory and functions in tandem with the theatre for larger events. Our web site is