Oriental Theatre

1601 Blue Hill Avenue,
Boston, MA 02126

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Showing 1 - 25 of 63 comments

Matt Lambros
Matt Lambros on September 29, 2022 at 5:23 am

I was able to photograph what’s left of the theater a few years ago. Unfortunately, there isn’t much.

DavidZornig on November 27, 2015 at 1:13 pm

3 photos added. One is a lighter version of one in an embedded link.

Arrow on July 6, 2013 at 9:00 am

Re. Karens Buttercup Donuts – they were the best. Try Kane’s Donuts in Saugus on the North Shore for a similar treat. Re. Stoughton – a lot of the stuff also went to the Stoughton theater.

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on April 18, 2012 at 11:21 am

dickneeds111 is correct-some equipment from the Oriental was removed and installed in the old Strand Theatre in Canton which was then renamed “Oriental”.When that theater closed, most of the equipment was removed to storage.

dickneeds111 on April 17, 2012 at 11:45 am

I remember the Oriental well even though I never went inside. My Father worked directly across the St. for 30 almost 30 years. He worked at Karens Buttercup Donuts and Restaurant. He made all the Donuts which were the best in all of Boston. He was there from about 1951 until it closed in the early 70’s because of financial concerns with the owners. Plus the area had really gone down hill from the middle 60’s to now. He was brassed knuckled twice that I remember when going to work at 10pm. We lived in Fields Corner so I went to the smaller Fields Corner theatre for the same entertainment. It had the same owners. I remember when it closed the moving ceiling was removed and I believe it was installed in a theatre in either Stoughton or Canton. I don’t know where it is now.

LINESIDES on April 3, 2012 at 3:00 pm

As a kid going there 1957 or so we only went there when they had special shows. Unfortunately I don’t remember just what I saw there. What I do remember is that these special shows would involve actors on the stage before, or in the middle of the program dressed up in different costumes. They would be Cowboys and Indians etc. These were always great draws. The other draw with these show were they would give away little trinkets. Can’t remember just what they were either. However I will always remember the excitement going to one of these productions. The trinkets were like something one would get in a cracker Jacks box. They would give you quite a few items.

MarkB on November 15, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Good content from the Dorchester Atheneum:


KMac537 on February 11, 2010 at 5:52 pm

Terry Hochmuth, do you have any pictures of the Wurlitzer Organ? I had lived behind the Oriental on Rexford St until 1985. I am an organist myself and am curious about the organ that was there. I was still a young kid when the theatre closed.

Arrow on September 11, 2009 at 7:28 am

Anyone interested in an employee reunion?

Arrow on May 19, 2009 at 12:39 pm

Has anyone viewing this site worked there?

suldog on February 9, 2009 at 10:28 am

I just want to say “Thank You!” to all who have shared photos here. Each one gave me a small rush as I viewed them.


ast1590 on June 26, 2008 at 12:33 pm

by the way if anyone has any old Mattapan Square pics or any Delaney Chevrolet,Mattapan pics I would love to see them……….thanks


ast1590 on June 26, 2008 at 12:27 pm

View link

hello……….if this link does not work, type in “Mattapan Reporter, Oriental Theater in Google, should get you to a great old shot of the Oriental.

paige75 on June 10, 2008 at 2:52 pm

I have had that picture for a while now. That picture was and maybe still is posted on the internet and it’s even clearer than that so you can make out what movie is playing on the marquee!! Aren’t you nice to take the time to post it. I appreicate that! I spent a lot of time in that theater when I was very young, through my teens and later on a few dates!! Now…..if anyone has the good fortune to have any interior pictures of that theater that would be awesome. I can picture in my mind the red lacquered elaborate benches and the
fancy ladies room and the ornate carpet etc. Those wonderful
memories will stay with me forever!!!!

Merrill on June 10, 2008 at 10:07 am

The picture is MUCH better than the photobucket shot indicates. I have framed it up and it is very nice and shows detail well. It is sort of a brownish black and white photo from possibly a publicity photo from the opening or 1930. “Min and Bill” and “Along Came Youth” is on the marque. It measures 14 ½" x 10 ½". I will do everything I can to see that you get a good copy. I bought this at a flea market not knowing what it was. Nice that you have the organ. Merrill

rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on June 8, 2008 at 10:12 am

I compared the photo which Merrill Bancroft posted above with the rather poor photo (xerox copy) on the MGM Report and they are the same theatre. The MGM photo was taken head-on from across the street in May 1941.

Capeguy on June 8, 2008 at 4:52 am

Merrill, if it would be possible to get a copy of that photo, I would be mor ethan happy to pay for that. I own the Wurlitzer theatre organ from the Ori. Terry

Capeguy on June 8, 2008 at 4:51 am

That is definitely the Mattapan Oriental!

Merrill on June 7, 2008 at 7:28 pm

Sorry, it must have gotten lost…

View link

I have had this photo for a while and would to identify it. I believe it is the Mattapan theatre.

paige75 on June 7, 2008 at 12:51 pm

What picture are you referring to????

Merrill on June 7, 2008 at 12:38 pm

This is a bad picture but can anyone verify if it is the Mattapan theatre?

paige75 on May 31, 2008 at 7:05 pm

Anyone who grew up on Callender St. close to Blue Hill Ave. in the
mid 1950’s and ‘60’s….I hope you discover this site and write
about your memories of the Oriental Theater and the good old days
living in Dorchester. It’s so great to look back on those days.
We didn’t realize just how lucky we were then!!!!

LouM on May 31, 2008 at 4:34 pm

I was searching for some old pictures of the Oriental, which it seems that nobdy has, and found this site. To my surprise, one of the entries is from an old friend, from Mattapan. Rick (RHM02126). I haven’t seen him in about 20 years. Hi Rick, this is Lou M (78 Greenfield Rd). Is there anyway to get in contact with you?

paige75 on December 3, 2007 at 5:49 pm

I have the same memories. Grew up in Dorchester, moved to Mattapan Sq. when I was almost 18. A friend I grew up with moved to Mattapan
a year before my family. She lived right up the street from the Ori,so we spent a lot of time in that theater. Had many grilled hot dogs from Simcos. Since she lived near St.Angelas we had many occasions to talk to some of the nuns during the summer. Great memories and a great time in my life. We were so lucky to have what we had, such simple times jam packed with many fun things to do!!!
Whenever I get really fed up with the fast paced life of today I just put myself back in Mattapan walking down to the Oriental Theater envisioning the buddahs, and clouds and twinkling stars. By
doing that some of my stress melts away. I still talk to my high school friends and we always talk about the Oriental Theater and
what a wonderful time in our life those years were…….Marcy

morrisrh02126 on December 2, 2007 at 8:14 pm

I loved the Oriental Theater !!!! I grew up in Mattapan and lived there from 1953 thru 1975. I remember being awed by the ceiling and the budda statues with the spooky neon like glow backlighting. Loved the Sat matinees when a kid and the late show when dating….People who go to these multi screen mega plexes where you hear the movie next to you as well as your own will never see the likes of something like that again, alas never will we !!!! Great place to grow up…..I remember after getting out of work at the Cummins Pharmacy, where I was a soda jerk, and then walking down the hiway to the Theater to catch a show, then on to Brighams for an ice cream, then walk home on a nice summer nite………I live in Pa now but when I go back to the ‘hood, I always stop at Simco’s for a grilled dog, salute the nuns at St Angelas as I go by , and drive by the Oriental Theater with a big nostalgic smile on my face……Rick