Photo courtesy of the Central Park Conservancy

After the Final Curtain: Lost Theatres of New York

Thursday, Oct. 12 6pm via Zoom

In the early 20th century, movie theatres were a common sight in small towns and cities across America. New York City, in particular, gave birth to the most extravagant of these venues. Known as “movie palaces,” these large, elaborately decorated spaces were designed to transport patrons out of their ordinary lives and into an environment of fantasy and splendor.

Yet, as time went by, it became progressively difficult to fill theatres that once held as many as 2,000 moviegoers. Changing times, tastes, and technologies ultimately led to the closure of many of these remarkable buildings. Some met their fate by wrecking ball; others, more fortunate, found new purposes as churches or performing arts centers. A few were simply sealed away and faded into obscurity.

Architectural photographer Matt Lambros has been on a mission to document the crumbling movie theatres of America. Author of the acclaimed book, After the Final Curtain: America’s Abandoned Theatres, he invites us to join him for a special presentation that takes us behind his lens and back to the era of the great movie palaces and the lost theatres of the Upper West Side of Manhattan and beyond.




Photo courtesy of the Central Park Conservancy

The Piccirilli Family: A Stone Carving Dynasty

Wednesday, Oct. 25 6pm via Zoom

Sculptor and author John Belardo brings to LW! the fascinating story of “Piccirilli Brothers Sculptors,” a family of immigrants who gave their new country masterpieces to last a nation’s lifetime.

Though their names are perhaps not familiar, we know them well through the elaborate Maine Memorial at Columbus Circle and the heartbreakingly beautiful Fireman’s Memorial on Riverside Drive, as well as Patience and Fortitude, the lions of the New York Public Library, and the iconic seated Abraham Lincoln at the Lincoln Memorial.

The Piccirilli studio eventually became the largest in America and, over nearly five decades, some of the country’s most important public sculptures would be carved there.





Other past recordings are available to current LW! Members via our PROGRAMS LIBRARY.


The Opulent Apartment Houses of The Boulevard VIDEO

This event has passed, but a link to the full 1.25 hour video can be purchased below. 

The Ansonia, the Belleclaire, the Dorilton, the Belnord, the Apthorp: five of the finest apartment hotels of “The Boulevard” on the Upper West Side. It was the turn of a new century and people like William Waldorf Astor and William Earl Dodge Stokes had a vision for a new way of living. They imagined the well-to-do living, hotel-style, in gracious apartments flanking a fashionable boulevard similar to the Champs-Élysées in Paris. (This explains why the first three of the above were so French in style.) 

Historian Tom Miller (aka The Daytonian in Manhattan blogger) takes us along The Boulevard, circa the heyday of these impressive and aspirational buildings. Tiptoeing past the vigiliant doormen of the day, we’ll gawk at the courtyards, architecture and ornamentation; delve into the stories of some of the more colorful residents; and revel in the apartments’ upscale and innovative amenities. 






Only Murders In The Building: Staging the Scene of the Crime VIDEO

This event has passed, but a link to the full 1.5 hour video can be purchased below 

A murder. A trio of neighbors-turned-crime investigators-turned-podcasters. A landmarked building. A perfect evening! If you’ve been pulled into the whodunnit world inside the luxe Arconia building (aka the Belnord on the UWS), you can’t miss this “how-dunnit” special event. 

Emmy-winning Production Designer Curt Beech and Set Decorator Rich Murray and Art Director Jordan Jacobs from the hit Hulu show Only Murders In The Building will share their secrets on everything from scouting the perfect NYC building for this caper of capers to creating the entire glittering world within.

OMITB fans have been gushing over the lavish and eclectic interior set design crafted by our über-talented speakers that has made the fictional Arconia a full-fledged cast member. That courtyard! The lobby! Even the elevator! And of course, the unbelievable rambling pre-war apartments for each character: maximalist Oliver, sophisticated & quirky Charles, inscrutable Mabel and a host of others (no spoilers). Hear how every detail, color palette, texture and style were carefully curated to create a set that feels real and wholly New York City.

The Historic Districts Council and Landmark West! invite you in for an evening to peek behind the designer curtains (there will be photos!) of one of the most popular series that also features one of our city’s finest landmarks!






Holding the Safety Net in San Juan Hill VIDEO

Wednesday, January 25th 6-7pm via Zoom  

Please join Landmark West! and architectural historian Jessica Larson in this exploration of the ways in which Black charity and reform initiatives shaped the landscape of San Juan Hill, the community Robert Moses demolished to make way for the Lincoln Center for the Perforning Arts complex, in the early decades of the 20th century. Larson will focus in on the architecture of the buildings constructed to facilitate this social work, and together we will look at how the built environment of San Juan Hill was shaped by community-driven efforts to address poverty and improve the quality of life for the residents. Because charity work was deeply gendered, Larson will emphasize the significance of women to the spatial and welfare programs of the neighborhood.

Speaker Jessica Larson is a Ph.D. candidate in Art and Architectural History at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her dissertation examines the architecture of charitable and reform institutions built in Manhattan for Black aid recipients between the Civil War and World War I, with a focus on how women reformers directed to these designs. She has held fellowships with the American Council of Learned Societies, the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, and the Library of Congress. She has also worked for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Princeton University Art Museum, and the Bruce Museum. Jessica is currently a Fellow at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Museum of American History.   




Looking for VIDEOS of past LW programs? LW! Members have free access HERE with passcode!

Need the passcode? Email us at – all recordings are available for free viewing for members

Let's Keep in Touch!

Let's Keep in Touch!

Want the latest news?
Care to share about something in the neighborhood?
Be the first to hear about upcoming events?

Join the LW! email list!

You're Subscribed!

Share This