95 Year Old Chatham Theater Gets $2 Million to Renovate
The pandemic has been especially hard on the arts and small theaters that have been in business for decades. The Crandell Theatre in Chatham is one of those historic theaters that is struggling. However, because of the two million dollars raised and another million in an endowment, the ninety-five year old theater will be better than ever.
One screen theaters are becoming a thing of the past. In fact, The Crandell Theatre is one of only fifty left in the country and is an important part of Chatham's history and community. It is located in the heart of Chatham on Main Street and has been there since 1926. Much like the Cohoes Music Hall, it was used for traveling vaudeville shows and movies of the time. Sound was added to the venue in 1929 where they began to play "talkies" on their screen. Much of the actual building remains unchanged but renovations are needed.
The Crandell Theatre has been closed due to the coronavirus pandemic with hopes that they will reopen this summer. The renovations should begin in January of 2022 and this will allow them to be done in time for their FilmColumbia Festival at the end of 2022. Renovations will include upgrading the audio system, expanding the lobby and concession area. The restrooms will get a much-needed upgrade, seats will be replaced, and there will be a staff workplace and storage area, according to News 10 ABC.
Lydia Kukoff, the president of the board of directors said:
We are very much aware of the important role the Crandell plays in the community and in the region. The Crandell has provided a vibrant beacon on Main Street, Chatham, for nearly 100 years. We look forward to preserving the historic character of the Crandell while enhancing the current movie viewer’s experience.