Strand Theater Initiative

Strand Theater Initiative
119 North Main Street
724-742-0400

History:

The Strand Theater was constructed and managed by Gioachino and Rosalia Sapienza in 1914.  Gioachino and Rosalia were Italian immigrants seeking a new life and new opportunity in American and Zelienople.  In order to blend in with their adopted community, they became known to friends and neighbors as Joseph and Rosalie.  Joseph originally wanted to build a fruit market, but the local banker convinced him that the town really needed a theater.  So two-thirds of the structure was dedicated to The Strand, and the remaining third was Sapienza's Fruit Market.  The Strand featured silent films with live piano accompaniment as well as Vaudeville-style shows on its small stage.

In 1939, The Strand underwent its first major renovation and the structure was dedicated entirely to the theater, albeit with a nearly exclusive focus on the motion picture medium.  Joseph moved his fruit market across the street into what is now 'The Silvershith Shoppe' and a tax preparation office.  But the 'Sapienza' name is still emblazoned across the top of the building's facade.

The Strand thrived as a social center for Zelienople and Harmony for decades, providing a destination for families to escape the drudgery and routine of rural life to meet and enjoy a night's entertainment. But The Strand began to struggle when multiplex cinemas began dotting the suburban landscape.  The theater became more of a drop-off point for parents to leave their kids for an afternoon matinee.

But with increased pressure from the onset of the Multi-Plex and VCR era, The Strand could no longer compete. One night In the early 1980's, The Strand closed its doors and they have not been open to the public since..................................until now.

There have been a variety of suitors for The Strand over the years. Developers and private investors considered making use of the building for everything from a mini-mall to a dance school to a dinner theater. As recently as Fall, 2000, the FBI considered The Strand as a field office. However, the extensive cost of buying and restoring the building has kept potential developers away.


Upcoming Events at Strand Theater Initiative

Evita: In Concert

Friday, Sep 20, 2019 at 8:00pm
The Strand Theater
Zelienople, PA
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Evita: In Concert

Saturday, Sep 21, 2019 at 8:00pm
The Strand Theater
Zelienople, PA
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Evita: In Concert

Monday, Sep 23, 2019 at 2:00pm
The Strand Theater
Zelienople, PA
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Superstar

Saturday, Feb 15, 2020 at 7:30pm
Zelienople, PA
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Recent News

Strand Theater and Seneca Valley SchoolDistrict Partner on New Cafe

New Café to Open From Partnership With The Strand Theater and The Seneca Valley School DistrictZELIENOPLE - The Strand Theater announced today that is has entered into a partnership with The Seneca Valley School District Special Needs Program…

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103 Year Old Woman Celebrates Being Oldest Attendee at Taste of the New North Dining Out

16th ANNUAL EVENT ADOPTS A LITTLE HALLOWEEN FLAIRGrace Scheetz Has Been Attending the Annual Gala for Years, but in 2017, was Recognized at The Event's Oldest GuestMars, PA -- At 103, it's possible the Grace Scheetz may hold the record for being the…

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The 2016/17 'Broadway On Main' Subscription Series

BIG RIVER Big RiverTony-Award Winning Musical Based on The Adventures of Huck FinnSep 23, 24, 29, 30, Oct 1  8pmSep 25, Oct 2 Matinees  2pm The Strand presents its most ambitious full-cast, full-scale musical to date with this sweeping…

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Assisted Living: The Musical at The Strand Theater

The Hysterical Musical Revue About Sex, Drugs and 'Gettin' Old'! It's Time to Party Like It's 1969Everything your Granny told you about assisted living? Forget it!From early retirement right up to....well......you know, 21st Century seniors are…

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All-New Strand Musical Theater Camp

Kids Age 10 - 18 Are Invited to Take Part in The Strand'sNewest Youth Program and EXCLUSIVE Production! This New Camp Will 'School' You in the Ways of 'Rock'!If you have kids that love being a part of live theater and the performing arts, then we…

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2015 Holiday Inn (1942)

1942 Unrated | Runtime 100 minutesSo you think we're jumping on the 'it's too soon' bandwagon by running a holiday film in mid-November? Not if the movie runs the full gauntlet of holidays all year long, right?..........right?Either way, you won't…

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Christmas Vacation 2015

1989 Rated PG-13 | Runtime 97 minutesStarring Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo & Juliette LewisIt's Christmas time and the Griswolds are preparing for a family seasonal celebration, but things never run smoothly for Clark, his wife Ellen and their…

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Rudolph, Frosty The Grinch and Friends 2015

A Heartwarming Tribute to the Classic Christmas Specials of the 1960s & 70s, Live On Stage! Do you remember those classic shows like Rudolph, Frosty and The Grinch?  What about Year Without a Santa Claus, The Little Drummer Boy and Nestor, the…

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The Polar Express 2015

2004 Rated G | Runtime 100 minutesStarring the Voice of Tom HanksTom Hanks voices many roles in this charming tale about a boy's struggle with his belief in Santa Claus, and an ensuing trip to the North Pole via a magical locomotive.  The Polar…

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It's A USO Christmas 2015

Swing into that Good Old-Fashioned Christmas SpiritNostalgia takes the stage as The Strand presents a concert event that pays tribute to those famous USO programs produced for our boys & girls in uniform overseas back in the 1940s and 50s. …

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It's a Wonderful Life 2015

1946 Unrated | Runtime 130 minutesStarring James Steward, Donna Reed & Lionel BarrymoreHow many of you have seen It's a Wonderful Life?  How many of you have seen It's a Wonderful Life on a 25' screen with a digital picture and 45 speaker…

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Eddie Manion CD Release with Special Guest Joe Grucshecky

Eddie Manion has provided a steady stream of big open 'Texas Tenor' R&B / Rock & Roll sounds for long time friends Bruce Springsteen, Steven Van Zandt, and Southside Johnny for many years. Manion recently completed a 3 year worldwide tour…

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New Youth Performance Opportunity!

THE STRAND THEATER PROUDLY ANNOUNCES A NEW YOUTH PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITY!THE STRANDTASTICSYOUTH SHOW CHOIRDIRECTED BY STRAND FAN-FAVORITE MARY ANN MANGINI MARY ANN MANGINI LEADS ALL-NEW YOUTH SHOW CHOIRHurry!  Registration Deadline is September…

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Strand Theater Initiative News - May 29, 2015

THE STRAND'S EXCLUSIVE BROADWAY ON MAIN SERIES RETURNS WITH NOT ONE, BUT TWO, FULL-LENGTH MUSICALS FOR 2015-2016!Topping 2014's Oliver! will be quite a feat, but we are ready!  Join us for the beloved musical hit, The Music Man!  Already seen…

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Strand Theater Announces Its Most Ambitious Live Production Since It's '09 Grand Reopening Oliver! The Musical

Zelienople, PA -- The Strand Theater announced today, its most ambitious live production since the historic theater reopened in 2009 after more than 25 years in darkness and decay: OLIVER! It's the first time that the venue will produce a full-cast,…

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Ghost of The Strand Creative Writing Contest Announced

Amidst these darkened walls, shimmering above the cushioned seats and balcony rails, a ghastly presence roams, distraught that The Strand continues to thrive. As it traverses the deathly silent theater, the damp air becomes saturated. Stairs creek…

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Audition for Bible On Broadway in The Strand Theater

Seeking: children's chorus (appear ages 8-12) The Strand Theater in Zelienople is creating a new musical sensation.  It's a musical revue celebrating songs from all of the great Broadway musicals inspired by 'The Good Book.'  We're seeking 16…

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Anonymous Donor Blesses The Strand With $100,000 Gift

Zelienople, PA - The Strand Theater Initiative announced that an anonymous donor has given the non-profit's Capital Campaign a major shot in the arm:  a contribution of $100,000.  Many people are familiar with the historic Strand, which…

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Meet Lara Teeter and The Cast Of This Exclusive Concert Celebrating The Music Of Cole Porter

Zelienople, PA -- The Strand Theater is proud to announce that it will be kicking off the 5th anniversary season of its exclusive Broadway Concert Series with Tony-Nominated star Lara Teeter. Teeter will lead a stellar local cast with a particular…

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The Original Wizard of Oz Back on the Big Screen!

Starring  Judy Garland, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley & Bert Lahr See what we just did there?  Run the new prequel followed by the classic original?  Are we clever or what?! This is The Strand's second walk down the Yellow Brick…

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Strand Theater News - July 1, 2013

PGH. PHILHARMONIC - FREE Concert in the ParkTHU, JULY 4 8:15pm  The Strand Theater is proud to once again partner with Friends of the Park and the Borough   of Zelienople to present a full symphony orchestra concert leading up the the…

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Assisted Living: The Musical

Assisted Living: The Musical is a funny & fun One-Act Celebration of getting old! The song list tells the story, and here are just a few examples: I've Fallen for You (& I Can't Get Up), I Got the 'Lost My Dentures on Steak Night' Blues, A…

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Silver Linings Playbook

Starring Bradley Cooper & Jennifer LawrenceAfter a stint in a mental institution, former teacher Pat Solitano moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a…

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The Strand Theater - 3 Days! 3 Shows!

The Strand Theater is North Pittsburgh's Premiere Cultural, Education and Community Outreach Center! We present outstanding live programs featuring top shelf talent, as well as classic cinema in HD & 45 speaker surround-sound. The Strand is just…

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2nd Date Added for Celtic Tenors Concert!

Zelienople, PA---The Strand Theater Initiative announced today that it has added a second date for The Celtic Tenors Christmas Concert. This Thursday, November 29th, the trio considered to be the most successful classical crossover artists ever to…

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Ivy Leaf Orchestra Makes Silent Films More Festive At The Strand

Since its Grand Reopening in 2009, The Strand Theater's Silent Film Festivals have been popular staples at the historic cultural center.  The Strand began its existence as a silent film house with live piano accompaniment and the non-profit…

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Silent Film Festival 2012

The Strand's ever popular silent film festivals take on a whole dimension when we add live orchestral accompaniment using scores written for the original films.  The Ivy Leaf Orchestra specializes in accompanying silent movies and they bring…

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Witches Brew

Live On Stage!  Broadway and Pop Music in a Family Family Halloween Spectacular!Enchante' Cabaret is a professional performing arts company that tours throughout the Northeast and Midwest Regions of the United States. Since their commitment to…

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The Amazing Kreskin Performs At The Strand Theater In Zelienople PA

Zelienople PA---The Strand Theater is proud to present the world's most famous mentalist, “The Amazing Kreskin”. The theater is located at 119 North Main St. Zelienople Pa. With a showman's flair, a comedian's wit, and the capacities of a bona…

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‘Big Brother’ Ian Terry’s Uncle, Ron Slanina, To Perform In ‘Private Lives’ At The Strand Theater

Zelienople, PA---Even if you don’t watch the reality TV show Big Brother, it’s likely you’ve heard of Pittsburgh native, and Shaler High School graduate Ian Terry by now. Ian is the brainiac sensation of this season’s hit CBS series, in…

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Internationally Traveled Director, Hope Alexander, to Helm the Strand's Private Lives

Zelienople, PA - The Strand Theater has announced today that Hope Alexander, award-winning and internationally traveled director and actor, has agreed to direct The Strand Theater's upcoming production of Noel Coward's famous comedy, Private…

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