Modern Theatre (Boston)

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Modern Theatre
ClarenceBlackall theatre4 Boston AmericanArchitect March1915.png
Address525 Washington Street, Boston, MA 02111
Coordinates42°21′15″N 71°03′44″W / 42.35415°N 71.06210°W / 42.35415; -71.06210Coordinates: 42°21′15″N 71°03′44″W / 42.35415°N 71.06210°W / 42.35415; -71.06210
OwnerSuffolk University
Renovated1914, 2010
ArchitectLevi Newcomb (original)
Clarence H. Blackall (conversion)
Childs Bertman Tseckares (renovation)

The Modern Theatre is a theatre on Washington Street in Boston, Massachusetts. It first opened in 1876 as the Dobson Building designed by Levi Newcomb. It was renovated in 1914 as a movie theatre by architect Clarence Blackall; by 1980 it had fallen into neglect and dilapidation. In 2009–2010 Suffolk University demolished the building but retained the original facade of the theatre, and constructed a new building on the site.[1] Suffolk's new Modern Theatre opened on November 4, 2010.[2]

The theatre is on the National Register of Historic Places (1979) and designated as a Boston Landmark by the Boston Landmarks Commission (2002).[3]


The theater was the first to show a sound film in Boston, (The Jazz Singer in 1928,[4]) and the first to show a double feature.[5]

At one point called The Mayflower Theatre, during the 1970s it showed adult films.[6]

September 11,2013 : 12 candidates for mayor of the city of Boston squared off in a televised debate 15 days before the election. [7]




  1. ^ AIA Guide to Boston. 2008; p.131.
  2. ^ Boston Globe, Nov. 4, 2010
  3. ^ Modern Theatre, Suffolk University
  4. ^ History & Culture Downtown Boston Modern Theatre
  5. ^ Modern Theatre, Suffolk University
  6. ^ Long-vacant Modern Theatre in Boston to house Suffolk University students
  7. ^ "Boston Mayoral candidates visit Suffolk to debate, answer student questions". The Suffolk Journal. 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2019-07-25.

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