Ritz Theatre

Dublin Core


Ritz Theatre


Colbert County, Alabama; Sheffield, Alabama; Ritz Theatre; Louis Rosenbaum; Jewish Owned Businesses; The Arts


The Ritz Theatre, which was built as a playhouse opened on July 9. 1928, with the production of "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes."

Louis Rosenbaum, a prominent Jewish business owner who lived in Florence and who owned a chain of movie theaters in North Alabama, was the district manager of the theatre and C. J. Ross was the first manager of the Ritz.

The theatre had a seating capacity of 408 downstairs, 173 in the white section, and 110 in the "colored" section upstairs for a total of 682 seats.

In 1933 the Wurlitzer organ was refitted to accommodate talkies and the theatre was updated to an Art Deco style. On Saturday, January 23, 1933, the theatre had a second "Grand Opening" when President Franklin D. Roosevelt visited Florence, Alabama.

The Muscle Shoals Theatres became a subsidiary of the Nashville based Crescent Amusement Company in 1941.

The theatre went out of business on June 9th, 1951. The Tennessee Valley Arts Association purchased the theatre in 1985 and restored the building, reopening it to
use for local play productions, student recitals, and concerts.


Pam Kingsbury, University of North Alabama



Tennessee Valley Art Center


Alabama Cultural Resource Survey


1928 to the present.


Pam Kingsbury, University of North Alabama


Photographs courtesy of Kaitlyn Corfman.


Still Image and Text