New theater announced on the site of Utica Stadium, home of prize fight boxing. “South Utica arena will seat more than 3,000 fans. Circus seat accommodations already owned by Utica Stadium will be used. New lighting and heating systems will be installed.”
- March 1st, 1927-
Utica Stadium is razed to make way for the Uptown. Sign on building read “on this site will be erected the Uptown Theater, Utica’s most modern, most beautiful fireproof theatre building.”
- April 18, 1927 -
Work gets underway after delays, seating capacity for 1500. All of the structural iron was supplied by the Utica Steam Engine and Boiler Works and the Empire Wall plaster company furnished all the masonry materials.
An organ costing $25,000 is installed: “It will be erected on a lift or elevator device, disappearing when the orchestra is used. A large stage is also part of the equipment, though original plans call for motion picture entertainment. Use of a modern dimmer system, will make the lighting system for the entire auditorium the latest style in illumination. In the front of the building will be erected a beautiful marquee. Already a huge electrical sign reading Uptown Theater has been erected. It will have lights on the edges and a boom effect.”
Utica NY Daily Press 1927
- December 1927 -
The Uptown Theatre opens.
Several men and women prominent in the musical life of Utica will take part in the program which will mark the opening of the new Uptown Theater...The feature films will be shown for two days, giving three changes a week. Music will be furnished by the three-manual organ of the elevator type. The theater itself which will be thrown open for the first time Thursday is of an entirely new type of construction for Utica. It is constructed on the lines of an amphitheater, the seats rising in tiers, which give everyone a clear view of the stage.
Utica, NY Observer December 25, 1927
- 1960s-1970s -
The Uptown and the Stanley are the last of dozens of Utica theaters to survive the recession.
- 1970s - 1980s -
Multiplex cinemas move into the area and the Uptown carves out a niche for itself as a second- run movie theater.
- 1996- 2013 -
The Uptown switches management and business models several times before closing its doors in September 2013.
- 2017 -
The Uptown Theatre sits unused. UTCA is formed.
- March 2018 -
UTCA takes ownership of The Uptown with a plan for its restoration and reopening.
- JULY 2018 -
Phase 1 of Uptown Theatre Restoration Plan (renovation of former Michael’s Jewelers storefront) is completed with the support of Jay-K Lumber.
UTCA begins offering classes in sketch writing, improv and improv for kids in the newly-renovated storefront studio space.