Rialto Theatre

729 Locust Street,
Des Moines, IA 50309

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dallasmovietheaters on February 20, 2016 at 11:05 pm

The Rialto Theatre opened April 19, 1918 with J. Warren Kerrigan in “A Man’s Man”. It was designed by local architectural firm Kraetsch & Kraetsch with the Younker Bros. known for their Younker’s Department Stores doing the interior design along with A. Jasinski. Though Wm. Knudson was the contractor, Winkle Terra Cotta of St. Louis provided the distinctively tinted terra cotta front.

S. Nelson Roper opened at the Robert Morton Symphony Orchestral Organ. Pathé and Goldwyn films were block booked at the Rialto, nicknamed “The Temple of the Silent Art.” With abundant competition from the Strand, Des Moines and others, the “temple” quickly was outmoded and outmarketed.

On January 1, 1922, the Rialto rebranded from the “Temple of the Silent Art” to the “House of Proven Successes: The Finest for the Least” or a sub-run house. The Rialto would continue to struggle unable to complete its ten-year lease. The Rialto Theatre was closed February 14, 1926 with Natacha Rambova in “When Love Grows Cold”. It has since been demolished.