Rialto Theatre Restoration | Beloved Icon Receives Fresh Coat of Paint

New coat of paint on the historic Rialto Theatre's marquee

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena receiving a new coat of paint in May 2020

When was the last time anyone saw the facade of the greatly renowned Rialto Theatre with a luminous red coating?

Most likely not in most a South Pasadenan’s recent memory, but painters worked through the heat this week to spruce up the historical marquee, marking some of the most visually striking improvements that the local landmark has arguably received in decades.

PHOTO: Rick Thomas | SouthPasadenan.com News | Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena receiving a new coat of paint in May 2020
PHOTO: Tina Kistinger | SouthPasadenan.com News | Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena receiving a new coat of paint in May 2020

The theatre, which has been operating as one of several locations for Mosaic Church, was overdue for a cosmetic, and more importantly, structural overhaul. While pedestrians and neighbors alike tenaciously inquired about when the crumbling edifice would finally receive some much needed TLC, it was announced in December of last year by Shomof Group, the current owner, that major improvements were to take place in the months to come.

Many obstacles had impeded the renovation’s progress, including permit extensions, and a possible change of location for Mosaic, which were all eventually remedied and gave the option to have the church, acting as tenants, and Izek Shomof, the building’s owner, to strike a symbiotic deal that would benefit the historic theatre and all parties involved.

Scaffolding and tarps lined the building shortly thereafter, bringing a refreshing air of excitement signaling that change was imminent.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena receiving a new coat of paint in May 2020

While the COVID-19 pandemic posed an unforeseen obstruction, the project seemed to lay dormant for weeks, with the only visible change being a message of solidarity stating, ” You are not alone.” However Friends of the Rialto Founder Escott O. Norton and Schomoff both gave the South Pasadenan News updates in April, saying that work was still being completed including the store front renovations, and wrapping up the cast molds for the building.

While the details are always important, to be able to see the improvements from the street can easily give passersby some affirmation that the theatre’s new life is closer than they may think.

PHOTO: Eric Fabbro | SouthPasadenan.com News | Rialto Theatre in South Pasadena receiving a new coat of paint in May 2020

 

Eric Fabbro is a South Pasadenan whose family goes back to the 1950's. He graduated SPHS 2008, and Art Center College of Design in 2014. His versatile skill-set includes illustration, digital media, graphic design & photography. Eric is the in-house illustrator for The South Pasadenan, and the creator of our South Pasadenan icon logo. His work has been shown in galleries throughout the Los Angeles area.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Covid-19 reporting. A couple of things I’d like SPN to report, is the death count – that would get people’s attention for using PPE. Secondly, The breakout of case origins between senior care facilities and the community. This is no time to play politics with shielding senior care facilitie reputations. We the public can better gauge our movements around town with specific information. If there is tracing info, I want to hear about it. It does the public little good if tracing info is just collected to throw on a chart.

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