Roxy Theatre

20 S. Broadway,
Peru, IN 46970

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Alliance Theater Corp., Cinecom Theatres Midwest States, Inc. , Lucas Theaters

Styles: Neo-Classical

Previous Names: Isis Theatre

Nearby Theaters

Water Color of Old Roxy Theatre

The Isis Theatre was opened by 1912. In the mid-1930’s it was renamed Roxy Theatre. Designed in a Neo-Classical style with seating listed at 1,090.

The Roxy Theatre went through various owners, Gregory Theatres, 1940’s Lucas Theatre Circuit, 1960’s Alliance Theater Corp. and finally in the 1970’s by Cinecom. It was demolished and a CVS Pharmacy was built on the site.

Contributed by Chuck

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

timlett on June 5, 2010 at 7:54 pm

Unfortunately this theatre was torn down in the 1970’s. I grew up in this community and visit as often as possible and all that is there now is a vacant lot.

jmoore on July 24, 2013 at 1:06 am

The Roxy Theatre in Peru Indiana had a long and proud life until short sited city planners failed to realize the importance of this classic theatre whose screen was crowned with the MGM lion, and after a small fire tore it down. The theatre featured unique bowl seating on two levels near the stage for dignitaries, and over 1,000 seats. Prior to the movies that most of my generation remember watching at the theatre, the Roxy also hosted performances by many great artists, including Bob Hope, Jerry Lewis, Cole Porter, to name just a few. In it’s old dressing rooms closed to the public signatures could be found on some of the walls. Sadly as it started into it’s decline in the late 60’s, the theatres once glorious interior was painted in two shades of green hiding its great beauty. I remember watching “The Glory Guys, The Chism Trail, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in that awesome old theatre as a child. It was an experience no other theatre has ever come close to replicating. The screen was gigantic compared to today’s theatres. It had a proud marquee, which thankfully partially survives on the side of the Circus Festival Building. At one time Peru had three great theatres, sadly all but one of the original structures are gone now. The one remaining theatre was long ago stripped of its equipment and walnut seating and has in years since served as a newsmart, calculator store, and other retail establishments. Yet it’s back room (the old auditorium) still at least most of the wall tile as recently as 2010. Peru is an amazingly theatrical town from which three theatrical greats came from including the great Cole Porter. Recently Peru built a new theatre which though celebrating the classic theatre lost so long ago lacks the heritage of that great theatre. Still, I am certain that the citizens of Peru are very thankful to have their modern Roxy. May she bring as many positive memories to them as the old Roxy brought to those who had the great opportunity to enjoy her.

bartswihart on July 8, 2014 at 1:14 am

I remember going there with my aunt when I was little we would go on sundays she passed away today 7-7-2014 rip I also agree with the one comment that the narrow minds of the city council couldn’t see past their own greed to preserve this land mark just like the rest of the town they made themselves richer while letting the rest of the town run into despair and now their are no jobs or future for this town or the people who live there.

John_M_Moore on April 19, 2016 at 3:58 pm

We are still attempting to locate high quality images of the old Roxy Theatre interior and exterior. The Roxy unlike the other theatres in Peru actually comprised of three linked buildings. Our studio artists were able to generate a rendering believed to be relatively accurate of the old theatre based on low quality images we were able to obtain from films taken in the 1960’s.

John_M_Moore on February 23, 2019 at 12:01 pm

We have uploaded two more photos of the old Roxy Theater. Sadly we still have not been able to locate any interior photos. We are still searching.

SethG on June 1, 2020 at 12:29 pm

This listing is full of misinformation. The Roxy was not across from the courthouse, that’s N Broadway. It did not open in the ‘30s. The building was constructed sometime before 1883, and it was a theater as early as 1912. I’m not sure how this could possibly have been larger than the Wallace, which was much wider and a bit deeper than this converted store.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 12, 2021 at 6:47 am

If this building housed a theater as early as 1912, we have another candidate for the Isis, which was one of only three houses listed in Peru in the 1914-1915 American Motion Picture Directory. The other two were the Palace and the Wallace, and we know neither of them was at this address. The name Roxy must have been adopted no earlier than the late 1920s, since the first Roxy was “Roxy” Rothafel’s eponymous house in New York City.

But here’s a bit of news about Peru’s Roxy in 1947, from the September 7 issue of Motion Picture Herald:

“Stage Homecoming Week For ‘Night and Day’

“Peru, Ind., the home town of Cole Porter, will stage a Peru Homecoming Week celebration for the local premiere at the Roxy. September 14, of Warner Brothers' ‘Night and Day,’ based on the life and compositions of Mr. Porter. All streets will be decorated with ‘Night and Day’ banners, and nearly every store and shop in the town agreed to tie in window displays.”

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