Boston Theatre

389 Centre Avenue NW,
Roanoke, VA 24016

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Boston Theatre

The Boston Theatre was opened by October 1914. It catered for African-American audiences and was on the S.H. Dudley Circuit and later the Southern Circuit of vaudeville theatres. The Boston Theatre was closed January 1, 1917.

Contributed by Ken Roe

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 20, 2017 at 12:20 am

The April 30, 1914, issue of theatrical paper The New York Age said that “Gaston & Jackson and Susie Sutton are at the Boston Theatre, Roanoke.” I’ve found references to both of these acts being on the African-American vaudeville circuit during this period. I haven’t found anything about Gaston & Jackson, but Susie Sutton appears to have been quite successful in vaudeville from 1910 through 1915, and later she appeared in movies and on stage, even having her own company of players in the mid-1920s.

The June 3, 1916, issue of The Moving Picture World had this item about the Boston Theatre:

“The Boston to Be Enlarged.

“Roanoke, Va. — The Boston, the only colored theater here, now having a seating capacity of three hundred and fifty, is soon to be enlarged to a size that will give, it is reported, a seating capacity of approximately one thousand. This house is owned by A. Andrews and is managed by S. Andrews, they catering to the colored population of Roanoke.”

I haven’t found any follow-up items confirming that this expansion plan was actually carried out.

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