Little Theatre of Wilkes-Barre
533-37 N. Main Street,
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Little Theatre of Wilkes-Barre (Official)
Previously operated by: Comerford Theaters Inc., Paramount Pictures Inc.
Functions: Live Theatre
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Sterling Theatre
Built on the site of an earlier Sterling Theatre (1916-May 1941). The Sterling Theatre was opened on November 27, 1941 with Bob Hope in “Nothing but the Truth”. In the 1940’s it was operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary Frank Walker. By 1950 it was operated by Comerford Theaters Inc. It was closed as a movie theatre in 1955. It was soon reopened as the Little Theatre presenting live theatre productions.
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Recent comments (view all 3 comments)
The Sterling closed as a neighborhood movie house more than 50 years ago, but it is still in use as the home of Little Theater of W-B. I think the seating number has to be high, as I’ve been in it. It is art deco on the inside, but not on the outside, as it was remodeled in the ‘30’s from a former boxing arena.
This theatre should be listed as open as the Little Theatre of Wilkes-Barre.
The Sterling Theatre was formerly occupied by another Sterling Theatre which opened in 1916 and closed in May 1941.
It was re-erected, rebuilt, and reopened on November 27, 1941 with Bob Hope in “Nothing But The Truth” along with an unnamed Donald Duck cartoon, a short entitled “Wings of Steel”, and a Fox Movietone Newsreel.
The 920-seat Sterling only operated for nearly 13 years, closing in 1955. A short time beforehand a day before Christmas Eve 1954, three juveniles were playing in front of the theater until one naughty kid apparently broke the door panel. The “cruiserman” called in the boy’s mother to pay nearby hundreds of dollars if her son was guilty.
On August 30, 1955, an announcement came that the Sterling Theatre building will become a city cultural center after a $75,000 bond has been paid for by the Little Theatre group, as it would renaming the Sterling the Little Theatre.