Manitoba Historical Society
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Historic Sites of Manitoba: Palace Theatre (501 Selkirk Avenue, Winnipeg)

This dark red brick theatre building on Selkirk Avenue in Winnipeg, measuring 50 feet by 105 feet, was designed by local architect Max Blankstein and constructed in 1912 by day labour by owner Jacob Miles at a cost of about $12,000. Originally used for live vaudeville performances, it was later converted into a movie theatre.

In 1927, alterations to the front facade and the addition of a balcony, increased the theatre’s capacity to 800 people. Designed by Max Zev Blankstein, the work was completed by day labour at a cost of about $15,000.

The theatre closed in 1964 and the stage, balcony, and all interior walls were removed. The space was used successively as a department store, auction house, furniture warehouse, and bargain store. In 1997, it was sold to a group hoping to use it for live community theatre. The building has been vacant since at least 2002.

Palace Theatre

Palace Theatre (circa 1930)
Source: Russ Gourluck, Silver Screens on the Prairie, Winnipeg: Great Plains Publications.

The former Palace Theatre

The former Palace Theatre (April 2017)
Source: George Penner

The former Palace Theatre

The former Palace Theatre (May 2017)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough

The former Palace Theatre

The former Palace Theatre (January 2023)
Source: Jordan Makichuk

Interior of the former Palace Theatre

Interior of the former Palace Theatre (2002)
Source: City of Winnipeg

Interior of the former Palace Theatre

Interior of the former Palace Theatre (2002)
Source: City of Winnipeg

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.91577, W97.14506
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: Jacob “Jack” Miles (1887-1951)

Memorable Manitobans: Max Zev Blankstein (1874-1931)

Manitoba Business: Allied Amusements Limited

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Abandoned Manitoba


City of Winnipeg Building Permit 2836/1912, City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Moving picture investments,” Winnipeg Tribune, 18 November 1912, page 11.

City of Winnipeg Building Permit 296/1927, City of Winnipeg Archives.

“To construct three theatres in city suburbs,” Manitoba Free Press, 9 July 1927, page 30.

“Largest structures completed in 1927,” Manitoba Free Press, 3 January 1928, page 6.

501 Selkirk Avenue, Former Palace Theatre, City of Winnipeg Historical Buildings Committee, December 2002.

We thank the City of Winnipeg, George Penner, and Jordan Makichuk for providing information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 25 August 2023

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