The Irving Theatre

1332 Irving St. | map


Opened: June 10, 1926 as a project by Golden State Theatres. This Inner Sunset district house was on the north side of the street between 14th and 15th avenues. The June 1941 photo by Alfred Cook appears on the Open SF History Project website.

Architect: Mark T. Jorgensen.  He did many other Bay Area theatres including the Rivoli in Berkeley and the Parkway in Oakland. The Irving shared many interior details with the Rivoli. 

Seats: 1,350

Status: It closed August 8, 1962 and has been demolished. Also see the page for the earlier Irving / Sunset Theatre at 830 Irving.



An early drawing by the architect. It's from the Jack Tillmany collection and appears on the Open SF History Project website. He calls our attention to the caption saying the theatre would be at 9th Ave. It was actually built between 14th and 15th. 

 

A montage of 1925 construction photos by Alfred G. Kull. It's from the Jack Tillmany collection appearing on the Open SF History Project website. Harry Sack and Wm. S. Godfrey, Jr. were executives with Golden State Theatres.


Interior views:


A look into the lobby from the front doors. It's a 1942 Ted Newman photo from the Jack Tillmany collection appearing on the San Francisco Public Library website.  



The view back down from the top of the stairs. It's a 1942 Ted Newman photo from Jack Tillmany on the San Francisco Public Library website. 



The inner lobby at the rear of the main floor. It's a 1942 Ted Newman photo from the Jack Tillmany collection that appears on the San Francisco Public Library website.  



The lobby at balcony level. It's a 1942 Ted Newman photo from the Jack Tillmany collection on the San Francisco Public Library website. 



A 1942 Ted Newman proscenium view from the Jack Tillmany collection. Gary Parks notes that the Rivoli in Berkeley has the same proscenium. The photo is on the San Francisco Public Library website. 



A 1942 look at the ceiling. The Ted Newman photo from the Jack Tillmany collection is on the San Francisco Public Library website.



The rear of the theatre in 1942. It's a Ted Newman photo from the Jack Tillmany collection appearing on the San Francisco Public Library website.
 

More exterior views:  


Thanks to Glenn Koch for this marquee view from his collection. Greta Garbo was the headliner in "The Mysterious Lady," an August 1928 release. It was a post on the BAHT Facebook page. Jack Tillmany comments: "Frank Galvin was a local pop orchestra leader I used to know. He also played the Royal."



An Alfred G. Kull photo of the theatre in 1929 running the Fox Movietone comedy "Clear the Decks" along with "Napoleon's Barber." The photo from the Jack Tillmany collection appears on the Open SF History Project website. 



A December 10, 1942 view from the Jack Tillmany collection. It's on a Western Neighborhoods page about the theatre and the San Francisco Public Library website. It's also been seen as a post on the blog San Francisco Pictures and on the Facebook page San Francisco Remembered as a post by Mark Sheehy



A 1944 look at the rear of the theatre from Lincoln Way and Funston Ave. The photo appeared on the San Francisco Railway Museum Facebook page. 



The Irving is seen in about 40 seconds of undated parade footage from the Prelinger Archives. Thanks to Bob Ristelhueber for posting it on the BAHT Facebook page

More information: See the Irving Theatre page on Cinema Treasures.
 
Jack Tillmany's Arcadia Publishing book "Theatres of San Francisco" can be previewed on Google Books. It's available from Amazon or your local bookseller.


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