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The First Movie Theatre

Vitascope Hall

[9]

With the popularity of Kinetoscope shows increasing in popularity and fame it was quite apparent that a larger stage would be required to fit the demands for these shows. In July of 1896, in New Orleans, Louisiana, William Rock and Walter Wainwright converted a vacant store into the first storefront theatre that was dedicated to showing films. It was called the Vitascope Hall and although it only showed films for two months it met the popular demand at the time. It could seat up to four-hundred people and showed two films a day at ten cents per show. This theatre laid way for the more permanent establishments that would soon start popping up. [10]

Edison's Vitascope Hall Ad

Ad in the Buffalo Express, Sunday Morning, November 7, 1897 Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.

Shortly following the emergence of the Vitascope Hall in New Orleans, a New Yorker by the name of Mitchell H. Mark created the world's first permanent movie theatre designed to exclusively showing motion picture films. The Edisonia Vitascope Hall opened in downtown Buffalo, New York, in October of the same year. It only sat seventy-two people at a time compared to the store-front theatre as mentioned above but it still charged ten cents per show. It remained open for two years but with it's popularity and success, Mitchell and his brother Moe would go on to open on more theatre's across the state.