A former vaudeville house where many famous artists performed, Frederick Francis Proctor’s theatre was opened on December 27, 1926 (ground broke on April 14, 1925). Procotrs was originally designed by architect Thomas Lamb and was notably added to the National Register of Historic Places. Proctors during the early 20’s was the site on many silent film era movies and in 1928, sound equipment was installed at the theater. In 1929, F.F. Proctor sold most of his chain to the Radio Keith Orpheum Corporation and Proctor passed away later in the year.
On May 22nd, 1930, GE showed a demonstration on new age technology (for the very first time) at Proctors theatre that we today call “television”. Many famous artists from Louis Armstrong to Duke Elington as well as George Burns and Red Skelton have graced the stage at Proctors during it’s history. Proctors is the home of the Schenectady Symphony and the Northeast Ballet and are active in raising funds for the Childrens Hospital of Albany Medical Center. Proctors also has one of the largest screens throughout the Northeast.
Proctors truly has the “classic feel” and has been beautifully restored as well as most of downtown Schenectady. It is the crown jewel of downtown Schenectady. Sadly, the theatre was going to be torn down to be turned into a parking lot but fortunately a group of activists joined together and created the Arts Districts of Schenectady which ultimately saved the theatre and jumpstarted it’s rebirth. Every year Proctors can be seen hosting top performers, comedians, musicals, and classical productions such as Broadway.
In 2003 Proctors embarked on an exciting new $30 million expansion with a brand new stage house to accommodate blockbuster touring Broadway shows including Phantom of the Opera. The box office, a coffee shop and lots of space for theatergoers was also added. A set of comedy series, musical events and small plays were added to create an exciting entertainment facility that can be enjoyed by locals today.!.
From East, South or West
Take NYS Thruway to Exit 25. From exit take I-890 to Exit 5 (Broadway). Turn right at the foot of ramp onto Broadway. Take Broadway to the second traffic light. Turn left for parking lot; turn right onto So. Clinton St. for 2 more parking lots. Left at third light (Hamilton Street) for parking garage.
From the North
Take Northway (87) south to Exit 6. Take route 7 west into Schenectady to I-890 west. Turn right off ramp onto Broadway. Go two Blocks on Broadway and turn right onto South Clinton Street. Take Clinton two blocks. Parking and the theatres’ back entrance will be on your left.