Palace Theater to open for movies next month

Evan Bleiler, a theatre instructor at the Palace Theatre seems very happy that movies are returning to the iconic area landmark theater.

The Historic Palace Theatre is set make its return.

The East Avenue landmark is scheduled to reopen to show movies as soon as mid-November. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week that theaters outside New York City in counties with a infection rate of less than 2% can open for audiences.

Chris Parada, executive director of Historic Palace Theater, the non-profit which owns the venue, said there is still some last minute bringing everything up to code, but that he and the theater are working on getting the doors open as soon as possible.

“We’re very thankful and excited. We are looking at all the different guidelines and protocols that need to be put into place,” he said. “Cleaning procedures, that kind of stuff. There is some air filters that we need to explore with New York State of just getting the building up to code, exactly where it needs to be to open. We don’t think there’s going to be any issues, by any means. It’s going to take about a couple of weeks to get things going.”

When things are finalized, the landmark venue will be showing movies every day, possibly a kid’s movie during the day time and something for adults later in the evening. An example of this would be “Toy Story,” then “Jurassic Park.”

“It all depends on Hollywood. What is available as far as, is there’s any new releases? I don’t think a lot of that is going to happen right now with Hollywood, but there is obviously every movie that’s ever been made at this point,” Parada said. “We’re going to come up with a whole schedule from now until we hear more guidance and we can open up with live shows.”

Live theater is not considered low-risk entertainment, possibly because of having people on stage projecting and singing which increases social-distancing needs, but two live shows will be filmed by a camera crew, and shown at the Palace Theater as films, said theater staff

“We have our dress rehearsal tonight,” Parada said. “Then we’re filming, ‘A Walk Down Broadway’ show tomorrow and we will show that on the big screen just like a movie.”

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