Old Regent Theatre
211 Trowbridge Street,
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Old Regent Theatre (Official)
Previously operated by: Butterfield Theaters
Functions: Movies (First Run)
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Regent Theatre
The Regent Theatre opened in 1919 in what was formerly a late-19th century horse livery. It originally not only showed movies, but presented vaudeville acts on its stage.
In the 1930’s, the Regent Theatre received an Art Deco style facelift, including a cream-colored vitrolite facade with red and green highlights. The six second-story windows have been closed up and covered with vitrolite with abstract decoration on them.
The late Streamline era marquee, with its only decoration being a large white star, is lit with neon and light bulbs.
After decades entertaining the people of Allegan, the Regent Theatre closed in the early-1980’s. It was threatened with demolition by 1990.
The non-profit Old Regent Theatre purchased the theatre the same year and restored it to its 1930’s glory in 1996.
In 1997, during a violent rainstorm, the roof collapsed causing massive damage just an hour after the last movie of the night let out.
Since then, the Old Regent Theatre has been painstakingly rebuilt and restored once again, including recreating historic panels in the auditorium and the original 1930’s carpeting. The building was rewired electrically, and new curtains were hung.
The 20 by 30 foot original screen was salvaged, but needed to be repaired. It is now one of the largest screens remaining in Michigan.
"South Pacific" was screened at the Old Regent Theatre’s second grand-reopening in 1999. Along with first run films, the theater also shows classic films and has a children’s matinee on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
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