A Tale Of Two Theatres
|The Mayfair and the Palace Plying Show Trade in 1932|
Robot Socks Vaudeville, and Then Came Judy
Two titan temples of
Change inspired perhaps by sentiment brought vaudeville back to the Palace on 5/19/49, initiating a movie plus stage policy that began with "8 Big Acts" and Randolph Scott in Canadian Pacific on the screen. Manager Sol Schwartz felt time might be ripe for a return to vaudeville, hordes having been exposed to it during wartime USO and bond-selling tours. Expense was kept down by renting the western at flat rate and holding talent budget to amounts the theatre could safely get back. The new policy maintained OK by mixing old-time performers (Shaw and Lee, Gus Van, Buck and Bubbles) with up-and-comers from radio, TV, and night clubs. For this week of late September into first days of October 1951, the Palace would feature Dick Powell in The Tall Target along with ten stage turns, none big names, but adequate for a single week's fill (Marty May, the Appletons, Don Rice, others). While the Palace realized $19K from the bill, rival The Day The Earth Stood Still was mopping up $28K for a second week of seven total that the sci-fi smash would Mayfair-play. Gort and company overpowered the Palace and Powell in terms of ballyhoo if nothing else, judging by their extravagant wrap-around-street corner display.
The Palace would close for a week of October to prepare for its return to two-a-day. Observe the partial-shown billboard above their marquee to see what was coming ... Judy Garland in triumph return to a