VICKSBURG FACTS: Saenger Amusement Company’s involvement with early entertainment  – The Vicksburg Post

VICKSBURG FACTS: Saenger Amusement Company’s involvement with early amusement

Posted at 9:00 am Friday, November 10, 2022

Did you know that the Saenger Amusement Company owns three Vicksburg movie theaters?

In 1922, the Saenger Amusement Company owned three Vicksburg theaters: The Walnut Street Theatre, The Alamo Theater and The Bijou Theatre, known as The Bijou Dream Theater in some Vicksburg media publications. The Walnut Street Theater opened in 1898 after the destruction of the Vicksburg Opera House according to Nancy Bell’s “Looking Back: The playhouse that saved Vicksburg entertainment.”

The Alamo Theater opened in the early 1920s and is located at 1501 Washington St. Eventually, the Bijou Theater opened in 1914 in what was first called the Majestic Theater in 1891 and later the Lyric Theater in 1908, according to Nancy Bell’s “Looking Back: Vaudeville, mush and a live baby donation at 1412 Washington St.

The Bijou Theater is located at 1412 Washington St. as mentioned in the article.

In 1911, the Saenger Brothers, Abe and Julian, wanted to enter the entertainment field after visiting a Shreveport theater run by EV Richards. The brothers decided to convince Richards to join them on their journey.

The Saenger brothers built the Saenger Theater with a vaudeville policy, meaning that the theater’s productions would be run as a joke with no logic or purpose, and made Richards a above, according to the Saenger Amusement website. However, after a year of production, they moved on to focus on another form of entertainment, the art scene. In 1912, the Saenger Amusement Company was organized and took over Fichtenberg’s New Orleans businesses, including theaters in Vicksburg, Houston and Pensacola, according to the Saenger Amusement website. .

When Saenger’s entertainment business began in Vicksburg in the mid-1910s, some changes were made to Saenger’s policies and Vicksburg’s interests.

The company gave Richards the management of The Alamo Theater and the Bijou Theater in 1917. As manager, he was able to give both movies a new look and define the theaters as “spic-n-span.”

Each theater is offered new seats and new exteriors. Other changes were more difficult, such as going to a union for the Vicksburg Musicians Union. The Saenger Amusement Company wanted to put more movies in their theaters; however, Vicksburg’s theaters are still used for live performances.

In 1921, after the Walnut Street Theater was purchased by the club, the Vicksburg Musician’s Union was not happy with the club’s initial proposal. However, after many meetings, an agreement was reached.

“Everyone was pleased with the outcome of the meeting and it was suggested that the musical members of the local club vote to approve the proposal and Eugene Clarke of the Saenger Amusement Company came forward for the purpose of the season. signing the agreement,” as stated on Nov. 17. Vickburg Herald.

After many changes and improvements, the Saenger Amusement Company continued to provide entertainment to Vicksburg well into the 1950s.


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