Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Boogie Down (Baroque) Bronx

NYC is full of quirky places. Saturday evening, I went to an event at a place I haven't been to in almost 40 years.

Contrary to what the sign says, that's the facade of the Paradise Theatre. It's located on the Champs-Elysees of the Bronx--the Grand Concourse.

Opened in 1929, it's a fine example of "atmospheric cinema." Built to resemble a Baroque Italian garden--and Baroque it is!

Back in the day, it was a venue for live acts and movies. I remember seeing "Rosemary's Baby" there with a then boyfriend from nearby Fordham University. Early in the '70s, the Paradise was divided into a multi-plex and then it closed in the early 90s.

However, in recent years, there's been several new owners who have brought the Paradise back to life. So much of the interior was destroyed that they had to work from old photos to recast many of the statues and to restore the ornate work.

I was there to attend a concert by my all-time favorite baseball player. Uh, no, he didn't play "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" on his bat.

Bernie Williams #51, former centerfielder for the NY Yankees is more than a terrific ballplayer. He's also a guitarist and composer. Latin, rock, classical--Bernie does it all.

Here's a link to a video of Bernie playing with the Allman Brothers last spring.

But, back to Saturday night. Yeah, that's Mr. Feliz Navidad himself Jose Feliciano up there on the stage with Bernie.

They each played their own set and they also made some music together. Muy caliente! They don't call the Bronx "The Boogie Down Bronx" for nothing!

Knitting content ahead!

Oh, right, that's why you're all here. OK then -- the Tabloid Socks are in need of toes:


Windyridge said...

Wow how beautiful, and Bernie a talented musician? Wow again.
We have a beautiful theater, somewhat like that in Syracuse. I went to see an Alison Krause concert there and I was amazed at how ornate and visually striking the theater was. I can;t for the life of me remember the name of the theater at the moment.

StringPlay said...

Sounds like you had a great time. Paradise reminds me of Atlanta's Fox Theater. And you know those Allman Brothers are Georgia boys!

Kimberli said...

Beautiful theatre! I've always been told it's I've got to go check it out! Thanks!!

Devorah said...

Wow! Great photos. The ornateness of these places never ceases to amaze me. Glad you had such a good time!