113 E. Phillips Street,
113 E. Phillips Street,Coaldale, PA 18218
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I worked at the Angela when I was 14 yrs old as ticket taker & later projectionist. When it came available at a tax sale I just had to have it. A lot of people thought I was out of my mind including my family. They didn’t realize how much experience I accumulated over the years working for big chains like Sameric Theatres, Budco & Redstone Theatres as manager projectionist & technician. I’ve developed all the skills electrical, plumbing,carpentry & technical that I needed to put this fine theatre back together and in Aug. of 1998 it reopened as the Angela Triplex Theatre.
A photo from 2010:
Here is a 1986 photo:
I was only five years old at the time, but I recall throwing some coins into the cement as they were pouring the foundation of this beautiful theatre. Building the Angela was the height of my Dad’s 50+ years in the theatre business which began in Philadelphia with the job of walking up and down the aisles with water for any thirsty patrons. When the Angela was completed, he was operating about 15 theatres all of which were named ‘Ritz’ except the three he built himself: Andrea, Catawissa, PA (named for his Dad), Laura, Montoursvilla, PA (named for his wife), Angela, Coaldale, PA (named for his Mom and daughter).
Coaldale folks should feel a bit lucky since the Angela was to be built in Stone Harbor, NJ; however, the fire that destroyed the Ritz in Coaldale changed his plan. (By the way, the Ritz was on Second Street, not on the current site of the Angela.)
A lot of my youth was spent in the Angela, selling candy, taking tickets, sweeping floors and sidewalks, running the projectors, and managing. There are some wonderful memories in this fine theatre for me and the town as well. I wish Mike Danchak all the luck in the world in his revival of this fine showplace. Ron Magazzu
A correction to my previous post:
The contractor for The Angela was Salvadore DeFazio. Boyd Kline was the contractor for another of Mr. Magazzu’s theaters located in Montoursville, PA called “The Laura”.
An update on the history:
The Angela Theater was built on the site of an earlier theater which was destroyed by a Christmas night fire in 1948. Mr. Peter Magazzu Sr.,who owned a chain of movie theaters in northeast Pennsylvania, built the new theater naming it after his mother and daughter who shared the same name.
The construction firm was Boyd Kline Contracting of Bloomsburg,PA.
The theater contained 711 seats; a number Mr. Magazzu considered to be lucky. Perhaps he was right since this is the only one of his theaters still running.
The Angela opened on October 11,1949 (Mr. Magazzu’s birthday) with a showing of the movie “Africa Screams” starring Bud Abbott and Lou Costello.
According to the website it now has 442 seats. Large theatre has 240 seats and the other 2 each have 101.
I recently went to see a movie at the Angela. The owners have done an incredible job of renovating/restoring this theater. I was able to speak to them after the show ended. They happily shared stories and photos of the theater before and during renovations. It is a great example of how a single screen theater can be converted to a multiplex while retaining its character and charm. Many of the original features remain, including the stage, sloped floors,glass entrance doors,glass block lighting and chandeliers. The owners should be commended for their foresight and perseverance in this project.
I lived in the area in the 70s after the theatre closed and always wondered about its history. Thanks, Bobs, for creating this page. I’ve seen a picture of the Ritz Theatre on Second Street, destroyed by fire in the ‘40s.
The official theater website is http://www.angelatheatre.net/