The Pantages is the city’s oldest existing theatre, and the oldest remaining from the Pantages Theatre chain in North America.
Designed by architect E.E. Blackmore in 1907. Its humble brick exterior and 1970s lobby belie a stunning house interior embellished by ornate, classically-inspired plasterwork. In recent times it has been the City Nights theatre, and finally the Sun Sing, a Chinese Language cinema.
A victim of tough times on East Hastings Street, the theatre has been empty and decaying since the early 1990s. Moisture is now causing the plasterwork to fall, and its new owners face an immense challenge in getting monies and expertise to rehabilitate the building as a music/entertainment venue.
Update December 29, 2011: Demolished. The final bricks are being palleted of what was the oldest surviving Pantages theatre from the once large theatre chain, and Canada’s oldest surviving purpose-built vaudeville theatre—Vancouver’s Pantages Theatre is no more.
Update October 26, 2008: The theatre is now seriously threatened, as restoration and financing plans have fallen through.
Update April 7, 2006: Plans are underway to fully restore the theatre, inside and out, for community groups use in the Arts.