Announcing: The 2013 Book of the Year Nominees

Each year, THS is proud to award the “Outstanding Theatre Book of the Year” that recognizes the book judged to have best exemplified documentation and appreciation of historic theatres. Nominations are voted on by the Board of Directors and the award is presented at the awards banquet during the annual Conclave each June.

For the 2013 publishing year, the following titles have been nominated:

All books

Madam Walker Theater Center
Author: A’Lelia Bundles
Published By: Arcadia Publishing
As they watched construction of the block-long flatiron building brick by brick throughout 1927, African American residents of Indianapolis could scarcely contain their pride. This new headquarters of the Madam C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company, with its terra-cotta trimmed facade, was to be more than corporate offices and a factory for what then was one of Americas most successful black businesses. In fact, it was designed as a city within a city, with an African Art Deco theater, ballroom, restaurant, drugstore, beauty salon, beauty school, and medical offices. Generations of African American families met for Sunday dinner at the Coffee Pot, enjoyed first-run movies and live performances in the Walker Theatre, and hosted dances in the Casino. Today, this National Historic Landmark is an arts center anchoring the Indiana Avenue Cultural District.
Year Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.

Memphis Movie Theatres
Author: Vincent Astor
Published By: Arcadia Publishing
Memphis has always been a theatrical town—a crossroads in the center of America for entertainment as well as commerce. Movies are among the many things that travel through the city, both for distribution and exhibition. Thousands of people who have lived here or just passed through, especially during and after World War II, found their way to the movie theatres. From the vaudeville palaces on Main Street to the nickelodeons on Beale Street, these theatres helped shape the culture of the city. Kemmons Wilson operated movie houses before he built the first Holiday Inn. Several movie theatres played roles in the life of Elvis Presley. W.C. Handy attended the opening of a theatre named for him. Local censorship practices influenced decisions in Hollywood, and the first multiplex in the region was built in Memphis.
Year Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.

The Art Theater: Playing Movies for 100 Years   
Authors: Perry Morris, Joseph Muskin, Audrey Wells
Published By: Champaign-Urbana Theater History
Lavishly illustrated and full of detailed stories, The Art Theater: Playing Movies for 100 Years takes readers on a trip through a century of survival to meet engaging characters, see cultural history in action, and feel the love a community can have for a movie theater.
Year Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.

Columbus, Indiana’s Historic Crump Theatre   
Author: David Sechrest
Published by: The History Press
Not since the construction of the Columbus courthouse had one man and his vision received as much publicity from local newspapers as John Crump and his theater, designed and built by architect Charles Sparrell in 1889. This is the story of the passion, struggles and triumphs that created the first true cultural arts center in this small town and the legacy that continues to inspire the community over a century later to protect this local landmark. It is a journey marked by first-class opera performances, flickering silent films, police intervention and arrests and, ultimately, decay and closure. A portion of the proceeds from sales of this book will go to the Heritage Fund in support of the Crump Theatre building–an architectural treasure in a city that boasts many.
Year Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.

Movie Houses of Greater Newark   
Author: Philip M. Read
Published by: Arcadia Publishing
They defined the America of its day. The silver screens were magnets for a population always on the lookout for an escape or diversion from the workaday world. Nowhere was that more evident than in New Jersey’s largest city, Newark, as well as such nearby urban centers as Paterson and the suburbs dotting the northern half of the nation’s most densely populated state.  The Branford. The Paramount. The Adams. The Trivoli. Lowe’s State.  They were but a few of the palaces where flickering images of Clark Gable and Vivian Leigh in “Gone With The Wind” pulled in crowds on the chilly morning of Jan. 15, 1940. “Long Line Shivers While Waiting for Movie Classic” read the newspaper headline. In the “seven-week siege” that followed, 270,000 patrons passed through the theater till. The movie houses – often architectural works of art in their own right – at times switched the entertainment to everything from racy burlesque shows to rock concerts. The Rolling Stones took the stage at the Mosque Theater, as singer Bing Crosby did before them. In 1964, 1,100 screaming teenagers arrived at the Branford to see The Dave Clark Five, whose 1964 hit “Glad All Over” bested The Beatles’ “I Want to Hold Your Hand” on the British pop charts. Philip M. Read, a graduate of Boston University, is a longtime New Jersey journalist whose career has landed him in newsrooms in Newark, Paterson, Elizabeth and Morristown over more than three decades. This is his fifth title for Arcadia Publishing.
Date Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.

Theater of Architecture   
Author: Hugh Hardy
Published by: Princeton Architectural Press
“Theater of Architecture is a breathtaking tour through Hugh Hardy’s work, but also an education in architecture. The places he creates are places you want to feel and be in.” Adele Chatfield-Taylor, American Academy in Rome In his fifty-year career as an architect, Hugh Hardy has built and reshaped America’s cultural landscape through work for some of its most beloved institutions. Theater of Architecture gathers twenty projects from within New York City and beyond—from the magnificent restored Radio City Music Hall and the revived New Victory and New Amsterdam theaters near Times Square to state-of-the-art facilities such as the Botanical Research Institute of Texas in Fort Worth. Hardy discusses in detail each project’s development and the challenges, strategies, and human concerns that influenced its design. Critic Mildred Friedman provides further insight in conversations with many of Hardy’s clients and collaborators. Hardy’s work has been consistently recognized by civic, architectural, and preservation organizations for its progressive spirit and sensitivity to context. Theater of Architecture is an illuminating study of the creation of memorable architecture.
Date Published: 2013
Available for purchase here.


Have you or are you going to publish a book in 2014? Nominate it for the Outstanding Book of the Year award.

One Comment

  1. love it!


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