The Royal Theater Community Heritage Corporation
Rebuilding the Royal Theater and Historic Pennsylvania Avenue

We will raise “The Royal” one Brick @ a time

The Royal Theater & Community Heritage Corporation is a nonprofit 501©3 organization whose mission is to redevelop historic Pennsylvania Avenue in old west Baltimore and rebuilding the famous Royal Theater as it’s’ anchor. The story is that African Americans created a brick campaign to raise money to build the theater.

In That spirit The Royal Theater & Community Heritage Corporation introduced Rebuild The Royal One Brick @ A time Campaign. The cost of a brick is just $5.50 and our goal is to raise enough money to purchase 1million bricks.  The names of those that have purchased bricks will be placed on a designated wall of the project. Become a part of history and help rebuild a community.                                            

The Royal Theatre, which first opened in 1922 as the black-owned Douglass Theatre, was the most famous theater along West Baltimore City's Pennsylvania Avenue, one of a circuit of five such theaters for black entertainment in big cities. Its sister theaters were the Apollo in Harlem, the Howard Theatre in Washington, D.C., the Regal Theatre in Chicago, and the Earl Theater in Philadelphia.

All of the biggest stars in black entertainment, including those in jazz and blues, performed at the Royal. Ethel Waters debuted there, as did Pearl Bailey, who sang in a chorus line. Louis Armstrong and Fats Waller worked as accompanists. Singer Louis Jordan, Duke Ellington, The Tympany Five, Etta James, Nat King Cole, The Platters, The Temptations, and The Supremes, as well as a 40-piece, all-female band touring with Count Basie called the Sweethearts of Rhythm, were all performers at the Royal. Baltimore City's first talking motion picture was shown there: 1929's Scar of Shame, featuring a black cast. It was here that Solomon Burke was crowned the King of Rock 'n" Soul in November 1963.









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