Rivoli Theatre

1st Avenue and Madison Street,
Seattle, WA 98104

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Sterling Theaters, Inc.

Previous Names: Tivoli Theatre, Gaiety Theatre, Oak Theatre, Olympic Theatre, State Theatre, State-Ritz Theatre, Old Seattle Theatre

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Rivoli Theatre

Opened November 10, 1913 as the Tivoli Theatre, it was a burlesque theatre for many years and artists such as Sophie Tucker and Belle Baker appeared on the stage. It then housed a childrens' circus theatre.

On October 27, 1939 it was a movie theatre known as the Rivoli Theatre and it continued in this use until at least 1950. Later it became a legit stage theatre known as the Old Seattle Theatre and when this folded it reverted to the name Rivoli Theatre again, this time showing adult porn movies. It was demolished in 1970.

Contributed by KenRoe

Recent comments (view all 6 comments)

kencmcintyre on January 20, 2009 at 7:26 pm

This is from Boxoffice magazine, January 1960:

The Old Seattle Theater Company is the new name of a little theater association which has taken over the Rivoli, which has been closed for the past several months. The building first housed the Tivoli in 1913 and in the years following has been known as the Gaiety, Oak, Olympic and State Ritz. The lessees plan to remodel the old burlesque house and change the entrance from First Avenue to 111 Madison Street.

rivest266 on January 21, 2012 at 10:48 am

1969 ad has been posted here. It had two screens at the same time.

Matthew Prigge
Matthew Prigge on April 21, 2014 at 8:30 pm

This was where the nudie classic “The Immoral Mr. Teas” premiered in May 1959.

DDarling on July 12, 2015 at 11:42 am

In September 1960, this was indeed a legit theater. I was trying to get a date with a 16 year old girl who is now my wife. I did not because she was busy every weekend, dancing in the chorus line of “Damn Yankees” at the Rivoli Theater. Her being a “dancer” at the Rivoli is still part of our fun Seattle history for those who remember it as a Burlesque House.

robboehm on July 12, 2015 at 7:20 pm

Uploaded a picture of the Rivoli in the day and during demolition from Seattle Then and Now.

rivest266 on April 12, 2024 at 11:18 am

Reopened as Rivoli on October 27th, 1939. Grand opening ad posted.

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