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SequoiaThter (1929)B

Sequoia Theater, Mill Valley 1929 – MVN 0365

In 1915, the Hub Theater Building at 142 Throckmorton was built as a movie theater showing silent films. On February 21, 1929, the Sequoia Theater opened with talkies. A capacity crowd filled the theater’s 1200 seats for both evening shows, at 7 and 9 pm. Mill Valley’s population was then barely 4000. There were several short films, vaudeville acts, speeches and music from the Wurlitzer organ. The success of the Sequoia Theater put the Hub Theater out of business. Three months after the grand opening, a 12-foot high, 70-foot long “Mill Valley” was painted on the roof as part of a national project to provide guidance for pilots. In 1975, new owners decided to “twin” the theater, i.e., to make two cinemas out of one. They also proposed drastic architectural changes to the exterior: remove the marquee and convert the entire façade from art deco to ultra modern.  The Planning Commission’s Architectural Advisory Committee decided that any changes to the exterior had to  preserve the original design.