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American ShowmanSamuel "Roxy" Rothafel and the Birth of the Entertainment Industry, 1908-1935$
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Ross Melnick

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231159050

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231159050.001.0001

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The Prologue is Past

The Prologue is Past

Roxy, Media Divergence, and Radio City Music Hall (1931–1936)

(p.343) 8. The Prologue is Past
American Showman

Ross Melnick

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses Roxy's career from 1931–1936. From 1908 to 1928, Roxy had been at the forefront of technological change and adoption in film exhibition and broadcasting. But by spring 1931, when Roxy finally exited his contract with Fox and the Roxy Theatre, he had become a conservative nostalgist, repeating his time-worn broadcasting methods and his exhibition policies without noticing that the times had changed. His on-air variety show was no longer the only one of its kind, and, after nine years, it showed signs of age. While other exhibitors reduced their overhead and began booking headliners instead of prologues, Roxy tuck with much of the same stage show/film programming he had presented for well over a decade. Roxy died of a heart attack on the morning of January 13, 1936.

Keywords:   media convergence, media divergence, motion pictures, live entertainment, Radio City Music Hall

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