By Rebecca Brittingham
It was first constructed in 1945 by Mr. Wilds. It was originally designed to seat 1000 guests. For several years, right after World War II, the Commodore had been the place for social gatherings. However, when the city of Portsmouth started to decline, the theatre could no longer sustain itself and therefore, had to shut down.
In 1975, Fred Schoenfeld envisioned converting the old theatre to a dinner theatre to provide a place for guests to enjoy a taste of the past. Although many people believed that he would fail, Schoenfeld was determined to succeed. Two years later against all odds, Schoenfeld opened the Commodore attracting guests from all over the Hampton Roads area. Today, it has become a very popular attraction and the talk of the town. Unlike other theatres, the Commodore only has one screen and usually shows films on a four-week rotation.
Rebecca Brittingham can be reached at Honeyrose13@gmail.com