Chateau Theatre

15 1st Street SW,
Rochester, MN 55902

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Chateau Theatre (Official)

Additional Info

Previously operated by: Finkelstein & Ruben, Paramount Pictures Inc., Publix

Architects: Thomas Farr Ellerbe

Firms: Ellerbe & Company

Functions: Café, Gallery, Live Music Venue, Retail

Styles: Atmospheric, Gothic Revival

Previous Names: Chateau Dodge Theatre

Phone Numbers: Box Office: 507.200.2707

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Chateau Theatre

The Chateau Dodge Theatre opened on October 26, 1927 by the Finkelstein & Ruben Amusements Co. It was equipped with a Marr & Colton 2 manual 9 ranks organ. In the 1970’s there were threats of demolition for a Wells Fargo building but a local group was formed to save the building. It was placed on the Register of Historic Places in 1980. It was closed on October 2, 1983. In 1994 it was remade into a Barnes & Noble bookstore. Barnes & Noble vacated the building at the end of 2014.

The interior is in an Atmospheric style, designed as a Medieval village with stars above. In May 2016 plans were proposed to restore the Chateau Theatre with a 2017 reopening envisaged. It reopened November 23, 2019 as an exhibition space, with a café, retail stores and a space for live music performances.

Contributed by Dan Landherr

Recent comments (view all 11 comments)

Jonathunder on July 30, 2006 at 11:48 am

Here is a Wintertime view.

HowardBHaas on August 6, 2008 at 10:17 pm

Thanks to the fellow who has taken these current photos of balcony, now used for storage. They show wonderful Art Deco detail.

View link

KJB2012 on May 11, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Is/was this theatre haunted?

tmkski on February 27, 2014 at 4:31 pm

I rebuilt this organ in the late 50’s when I was attending IBM classes. Used my own money and did it in my spare time. Great to have stumbled upon this site. At least the theatre is still there!! I still have a tape of that original concert somewhere around my house!!

A few local organ buffs found out about it and helped tune it and we had a concert by the guy that played it originally. He played it out of the pit!

Chris1982 on January 27, 2015 at 1:32 am

National Register of Hisdtoric Plasces Info. Status Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on July 17, 1980 Reference number 80002098 Architectural style Other architectural type; French chateau Areas of significance Entertainment/Recreation; Architecture Level of significance State Evaluation criteria A – Event; C – Design/Construction Property type Building Historic function Theater Current function Theater Period of significance 1925-1949 Significant year 1927

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 30, 2016 at 8:00 pm

this page of the January 21, 1928, issue of Exhibitors Herald and Moving Picture World features three photos of the recently opened Chateau-Dodge Theatre.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on November 17, 2019 at 10:53 pm

Although there was hope that the Chateau Theatre would be brought back to life as a performance venue, in May, 2019 the City of Rochester decided that it would be renovated primarily as a space for traveling exhibits, with some additional space devoted to a cafe, retail stores, and small areas for live music. The Chateau will reopen on November 23, 2019, with “The Magical History Tour: A Beatles Memorabilia Exhibition.”

This is the Chateau’s official web site.

On November 14, the Rochester Post-Bulletin posted this photo gallery featuring 57 photos of the Chateau Theatre at various stages of its history, including its time as a book store and during the recent renovation project.

50sSNIPES on August 8, 2023 at 3:58 pm

The Chateau Theatre opened its doors on October 26, 1927, and closed as a movie house on October 2, 1983. It is last operated by ABC North Central Theatres.

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