Ambassador Theatre

411 N. 7th Street,
St. Louis, MO 63101

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Showing 51 - 75 of 85 comments

Patsy on October 7, 2009 at 6:20 pm

Interesting to read about the signature wall of fame. Was it saved during demolition?

JAlex on August 6, 2009 at 3:26 pm

Howard B Haas: My source for saying the Ambassador was Spanish Renaissance was, among may others, the St. Louis Globe-Democrat of August 22, 1926. Rapp & Rapp did have a French Renaissance style theatre in St. Louis, the St. Louis Theatre, now Powell Symphony Hall.

Ziggy on August 6, 2009 at 10:22 am

Yes Chuck, I should have specified which Fox Theatre I meant. Since we were discussing a theatre in Saint Louis I figured it would be taken for granted. Thanks for clarifying that.

HowardBHaas on August 6, 2009 at 10:01 am

JAlex, what’s your source for that assertion? All sources that I read online state French Renaissance. Naylor’s hardback book specifies the lobby is “French palatial.”

Ziggy on August 6, 2009 at 9:42 am

Seymour, thank you for posting that photograph, but that is the box office of the Fox Theatre. You can tell by the gryphons on the door handles, and can faintly make out the word “FOX” painted on the box office glass. If you could re-post the photo at the Fox page it would be a nice addition to the comments there.

JAlex on August 6, 2009 at 9:21 am

“French Renaissance” was not the style of the Ambassador. Spanish Renaissance is the correct style, with the theatre having a flavor of a Spanish festival.

seymourcox on July 26, 2009 at 2:42 pm

May, 1957, boxoffice view from LIFE Photograph Collection,
View link

JAlex on February 5, 2009 at 12:30 pm

Speaking to trying to get interior photos: In the late 70s we asked to be able to get in and do so, but were refused as “there was no insurance.” The owner at the time: Equitable Life Assurance of America!

Lak on December 18, 2008 at 1:41 pm

I also went to the owners in the mid 1980’s and asked to look at, and photograph the interior. They said,“No”. I always thought they were trying to hide something. I don’t think they wanted the public to see how salvagable this theatre really was.

WesternWatcher on September 12, 2008 at 7:02 am

I recall that the building’s owners in the 1990s wanted to put a shopping mall in the theater space, then auctioned off as many furnishings as they could get out of there in order to turn it into a parking garage, then decided to sell the entire building to Mercantile Bank to tear it down. I went to the owners' office in the building one day to ask for permission to take pictures of what was left inside the theater. They said, “There’s nothing left in there to see.” Not so, according to the photos posted here of the demolition. An old friend once told me he never liked that theater because the lobby was to shallow and you could hear the outdoor traffic in the auditorium. But it certainly was beautiful.

MIchaelEllis on July 8, 2008 at 11:20 am

The Ambassador was a roadshow house in the 1960s, at which I had the pleasure of viewing several films in 70mm, including Cleopatra, My Fair Lady, Dr. Zivago and The Bible. Great 6-track magnetic sound and a splendid screen image.

Kerry Manderbach
Kerry Manderbach on February 17, 2008 at 10:15 pm

The Ambassador was much harder to sneak into than the Loew’s State around the corner on Washington. One vivid memory I have of the Ambassador is that it ran the first Kung-Fu flick to be shown in St. Louis, “Five Fingers Of Death” in the spring of 1973. Ahh, those were the days….

ex143IA on February 4, 2008 at 12:39 pm

Shame this beautiful theatre is gone forever. Saw Lawrence of Arabia & The Longest Day there as a youth, and as an adult worked there in the late 60’s & 70’s. Loved poking and roaming around the theatre between shows. Did this when they had a single run, first run and you had about 2 hours between shows. Crying shame it’s gone.

melders on January 16, 2007 at 8:27 pm

Actually Life, it was supposed to be replaced by a parking garage. Some time either just before or after demolision it was decided that they didn’t need the garage and replaced it with the plaza.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on May 12, 2006 at 3:35 pm

Boy does this piss me off. I know that times change. I know that there isn’t a place in the modern world for every old theatre. But to leverage the demolition of a place like this for a stupid plaza just ain’t right.

phroggy70 on January 8, 2006 at 5:20 am

yes he was james..if you know anyone who worked there contact me….. he worked with all the acts that came through the theater…

JamesGrebe on January 8, 2006 at 4:56 am

Was your Dad there when live shows were being presented ?(rock shows)

phroggy70 on January 8, 2006 at 2:28 am

my dad was the stage manager for the theater in the mid 70s…i was pretty young but i remember running the halls of the theater very vividly.. what a beautiful place…it is ashame it wasnt saved…

Patsy on December 4, 2005 at 5:36 pm

It’s a shame this theatre couldn’t have been saved like the Fox was saved in Atlanta for all to enjoy today!

Patsy on December 4, 2005 at 5:35 pm

I subscribe to Reminisce magazine and in the current January/Febuary 2006 issue there is an article on page 36 about Cinerama by Dave Strohmaier who lives in Van Nuys, CA. The article mentions the Ambassador Theatre in St. Louis MO. After reading the story I immediately went to CT and read about this former theatre and gazed at the beautiful interior that is lost forever!

reel3 on October 14, 2005 at 8:15 pm

Thanks Chuck for the info on thi theater. I have returned to St. Louis from 40 years in California. I was interest in looking up the only 2 theaters I ever atended, I guess both are gone.

reel3 on October 13, 2005 at 7:30 pm

I seen This Is Cinerama here about 1954-56 not sure of time, Very impressive presentation. About this same time period I seen a roadshow presentation of I beleive Th Old Man Of The Sea, with Spencer Tracy at a theater on Del Mar Blvd. Not sure of the name. I remember the enterance from Del Mar into the lobby and the audatorum sat parell with the street. Does anyone know what theater this might be, and is it still in operation?

sdoerr on August 27, 2005 at 10:45 am

Some light fixtures and seats from the Ambassador are now being used at the Gem here in Detroit. The took them in 1990.

JAlex on April 29, 2005 at 9:27 pm

To be exact the pre-Cinerama Ambassador closed on Dec. 12, 1953 with a double-bill of “Miss Robin Crusoe” and “A Blueprint for Murder.”

“This Is Cinerama” opened on Feb. 10, 1954.