Historic Sites of Manitoba: Tivoli Theatre (115 Maryland Street, Winnipeg)

Located at the northeast corner of Maryland Street and Westminster Avenue in Winnipeg, this building measuring 50 feet by 122 feet was designed by local architect Max Blankstein for Raymond Kershaw. Construction took place during 1927 and was overseen by contractors Fraser and MacDonald. It was reportedly the first theatre built under new city by-laws, with its fireproof structure comprised of concrete, brick, steel, Tyndall stone features, and a gypsum roof. Interior pneumatic air spring seating was acquired from Potter’s Limited, with cinema equipment boasting Daylite projection and two De Luxe motiograph projectors. A Casavant organ to provide musical accompaniment was purchased from a Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec-based firm. Total costs amounted to $75,000 and its opening night was held on 3 November 1927.

Kershaw, via Kershaw Theatre Limited (KT), owned and operated the facility into the early 1930s, at which time they negotiated a deal for Famous Players Canadian Corporation to take over. In 1936, KT sold the venue to Famous Players although the theatre continued to operated under the Tivoli name. It was sold to Canada Safeway in 1959 and converted into a grocery store.

The former Tivoli Theatre

The former Tivoli Theatre (January 2019)
Source: George Penner

The former Tivoli Theatre

The former Tivoli Theatre (May 2020)
Source: Nathan Kramer

The former Tivoli Theatre

The former Tivoli Theatre (May 2020)
Source: Nathan Kramer

The former Tivoli Theatre

The former Tivoli Theatre (January 2023)
Source: Jordan Makichuk

Site Location (lat/long): N49.88202, W97.16085
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: Max Zev Blankstein (1874-1931)

Manitoba Business: Fraser and MacDonald

Memorable Manitobans: Raymond Kershaw (1869-1949)

Memorable Manitobans: Jacob “Jack” Miles (1887-1951)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Broadway First Baptist Church (706 Honeyman Avenue, Winnipeg)


City of Winnipeg Building Permit 4642/1927, City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Fall from scaffold is fatal for worker,” Manitoba Free Press, 15 September 1927, page 3.

“New tivoli theatre nears completion,” Manitoba Free Press, 1 October 1927, page 35.

“New Tivoli Theatre,” Manitoba Free Press, 8 October 1927, page 25.

“Thank you!” Manitoba Free Press, 4 November 1927, page 19.

“Largest structures completed in 1927,” Manitoba Free Press, 3 January 1928, page 6.

“Leaving to reside in B.C.” Winnipeg Tribune, 23 May 1936, page 8.

“Looking them over [There will be regret that Raymond Kershaw ...],” Winnipeg Tribune, 23 May 1936, page 8.

Henderson’s Winnipeg and Brandon Directories, Peel’s Prairie Provinces, University of Alberta Libraries.

We thank George Penner and Jordan Makichuk for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Nathan Kramer and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 9 September 2023

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