Structure Type: built works - performing arts structures - theatres

Designers: Biggar, Charles Howatt, Architect (firm); Charles Howatt Biggar (architect)

Dates: constructed 1946-1947

1200 Baker Street
Bakersfield, CA 93305

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The Banducci and Lemucchi Theater Company commissioned the prolific Bakersfield architect, Charles H. Biggar (1882-1946) to design the Tejon Theatre in 1945. At first, Biggar designed the building to hold 998, but later cut the number to 900. Cost was set just before construction began as being $175,000. The architect would die the next year before construction was completed and its gala opening occurred on 06/17/1947. The venue screened wholesome, family movies during its early years, and by the 1970s had switched to Spanish-language films. It showed these until the late 1980s, when it closed temporarily. It became an art house theatre when it reemerged in 11/1991, before it resorted to screening low-cost second-run films and double-features. The Tejon was shuttered again in 1992. New owners pumped time and energy into the Tejon between 1994-1996, when it resumed showing art house fare, cult movies and classics. This effort also failed and a local church has used the church since c. 2000.

PCAD id: 17130