Orange Daily News
May 22, 1929
Pages 1 & 2
Orange Theatre Ready For Gala Opening
After months of hard work, which had been preceded by several years
of court litigation, Orange's new cinema palace - the Orange
"Circle" theater - was ready for its introductory bow tonight.
Out of a troubled sea, which developed storm signs five years ago
shortly after construction was first launched, the theater project has
been successfully steered through tribulation after tribulation by a
former "dirt farmer"; M. Eltiste, who later turned business
man, then industrial leader and now has ventured forth as a showman.
The theater, as it stands completed today, is not only a credit to the
city, but is a monument to the enterprise, perseverance and
progressiveness of Eltiste, his associates and others who contributed in
some measure to the success of the showplace.
It was Eltiste who rescued the incompleted, structure from legal
entanglements; who labored quietly, but assiduously to achieve its
The grand opening tonight will be in the nature of a testimonial to his
enterprise and to his contention, that "Orange will be satisfied
only with a first-class showhouse, no more and no less."
Sharing credit with Eltiste will be C. L. Langley, the lessee, who with
A. B. Crawford, resident manager, has equipped the theater with the
finest equipment to be found in Orange county showplaces.
More than $40,000 has been expended on equipping the house, surpassing,
it is claimed, the amount stipulated in the lease.
Crawford, an experienced theatrical man, has overseen all details and
has constantly insisted that only the best be installed. The lighting
effects, color blending, drapings and stage trappings were all devised
by Crawford to attain the utmost in theater harmony.
To many, who have not seen the completed theater home,, a big surprise
will be in store tonight, when its full resources are placed on display
for the first time for the public approbation.
In order to permit the throngs to inspect the house, Crawford announced
that the doors would be thrown open at 6:15. An effort will be made to
start the first performance not later than 6:40 because of the length of
Opening ceremonies will include a brief address by Senator N. T.
Edwards, who will introduce Crawford from the stage.
The show will start with the introduction of Arthur Cannon, organist in
a musical specialty, followed by a banjo novelty by Joe Kozina, local
musician, accompanied by the pipe organ.
Cannon for the past 6 years has been organist at West Coast theaters at
Long Beach. Originally from Anaheim, Cannon is returning to Orange
county after 12 years in other Southern California cities, during which
he has arisen to a lofty position in the musical profession.
The opening screen program, which will also continue tomorrow night,
will feature a first-run, all talking picture, "Molly and Me,"
co-starring Belle Bennett and Joe E. Brown. Screen vaudeville, singing
specialties and a screen prologue complete the attraction bill.
Final tests of the sound equipment were made last night by factory
representatives of the General Electric company, manufacturers of the De
Forest photophone equipment.
The local theater is said to be one of three showhouses west of Detroit
to have the complete De Forest equipment, which includes both disc and