Loew's 7th Avenue Theatre

2081 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard,
New York, NY 10027

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Related Websites

Greater Refuge Temple

Additional Info

Previously operated by: Loew's Inc.

Architects: Costas Machlouzarides, S.S. Sugar

Functions: Church

Previous Names: Harlem Casino

Nearby Theaters

Loew's 7th Avenue Theatre

In 1910, future movie mogul Marcus Loew, who then resided in the area, acquired the Harlem Casino and converted it into a fully-equipped theatre for vaudeville and photoplays. All that remained of the old Casino were the exterior walls and the roof. S.S. Sugar was the supervising architect, with H.E. Stoner as interior decorator. The success of Loew’s 7th Avenue Theatre helped to finance the building of the larger and more sumptuous Loew’s Victoria Theatre, which opened nearby on W. 125th Street in 1917. But Loew’s 7th Avenue Theatre continued operating until around 1934, when it fell victim to the Depression.

Like many of the Harlem theatres, it eventually became an evangelical church. In 1966-67, it was ultra-modernized both inside and out by architect Costas Machlouzarides. As the Greater Refuge Temple of Christ, it is world-famous for its choir, and frequently visited on organized tours of Harlem, where that portion of 7th Avenue is now also known as Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Boulevard.

Contributed by Warren G. Harris

Recent comments (view all 13 comments)

Ziggy on January 20, 2010 at 1:42 pm

I don’t understand the first post on this theatre’s page. The 7th Avenue Theatre may have sometimes put on legitimate theater, I don’t know anything about that, but the photo shows the marquee advertising Norma Talmadge’s silent film, “Camille”.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 20, 2010 at 4:06 pm

To clarify,

I don’t see where it says Harlem Casino Theatre here. It was indeed a nightclub before Loews took it over.

The photo is of the Loews movie theatre playing “CAMILLE”. At times during its movie years it would stop showing movies and play legitimate plays. No other Loews house did that.

Ziggy on January 21, 2010 at 7:27 am

The “Camille” advertised on the marquee is a silent film from 1926, starring Norma Talmadge. I’m not saying that the 7th Avenue didn’t produce legitimate plays, because I know nothing of this theatre’s history, I’m just saying that the photo you posted shows the theatre advertising a movie, not a play.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 21, 2010 at 7:59 am

At the bottom of this page is a mention of the “THE BLUE PEARL” being cancelled when the star had an accident.

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TLSLOEWS on February 8, 2010 at 3:08 pm

Another Loews that I have no heard of,interesting history.

1920stheaterlover on April 14, 2018 at 8:34 pm

I think the gutted it. there is no trace it used to be a theater

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 31, 2018 at 2:43 pm

There are three photos and a floor plan of Loew’s Seventh Avenue Theatre on pages 354 and 355 of the October, 1910 issue of Architects' and Builders' Magazine (scan at Google Books.)

DavidZornig on March 6, 2019 at 5:32 pm

Doubled as Chicago’s Gate of Horn club for the film “Inside Llewyn Davis”.


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