Rialto Theatre

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Urban legends are told about a girl who committed suicide by slitting her wrists in the bathroom and then going up to the balcony to bleed to death. Another legend tells of a man who went mad in the projector booth. Witnesses say bathroom stall doors shake and apparitions have been seen of an older man in the seats or walking up and down the balcony stairs.

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Geographic Information

1023 Fair Oaks Avenue
South Pasadena, CA 91030
United States

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34.1140105, -118.15072709999998
Los Angeles County, California
Nearest Towns:
South Pasadena, CA (0.1 mi.)
Alhambra, CA (1.9 mi.)
Pasadena, CA (2.4 mi.)
San Marino, CA (2.6 mi.)
San Gabriel, CA (2.9 mi.)
East San Gabriel, CA (3.7 mi.)
Monterey Park, CA (3.9 mi.)
East Pasadena, CA (3.9 mi.)
South San Gabriel, CA (5.0 mi.)
Rosemead, CA (5.0 mi.)

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Comments (6)

  1. A friend of mine was the projectionist there in the late ’70s. IIRC, according to him, it was a former manager who hung himself there. My friend swore up and down that he heard his ghost, and had talked to people who had seen it.

  2. When I went there, they were having some sort of 100th birthday party. Anyway, I was going in, stayed inside for a while and then I heard a voice; it was deep and rasping and it called my name. I was so scared I ran outside. I got brave enough and headed inside to find out the the room I was in HAD NO ONE. So I stayed in there for a while and then I looked up (for some strange reason) to see a man standing on the balcony above me. He was wearing 70’s clothes and the top of his head was bleeding really bad. The man said my name AGAIN in the same voice as before. I ran the hell out of there and didn’t come back. It still scares me to this day.

  3. Antonius Block  |  

    I grew up in South Pas and can affirm that this place is strange. In the late nineties I would often have trouble sleeping and so I would go for rather long, sprawling runs in the early morning hours. I would sometimes notice around two or three I’d get a second-wind and I would grab a jacket and head out. One morning my run took me behind the Rialto and I took a short break as I walked down the alley. I was catching my breath with my hands over my head sort of in my own world from the early morning cold and runner’s high when I noticed music coming from the alley. Curiosity got the best of me and, without really thinking, I followed the music up the back staircase which led to the Rialto’s back entrance. It was sincerely as if I was being guided by an external force…really bizarre. I climbed the stairs and found the door open; I opened the door and this odd music was playing in the black pitch of the empty theater. At that moment the spell was broke and I got a terrible chill. I slammed the door shut, sprinted down the staircase, and ran out into the early-morning fog shaking with adrenaline. It was the weirdest thing…I’ve never forgot the panic I felt just staring into the blackness and the odd music playing. No employees. No people around.

  4. I used to work in the early 80s – definitely haunted. Story I heard was that during the early days, a worker there fell madly in love with an actress starlet who ignored his advances. He hanged himself from the catwalk and has haunted the place since.

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Disclaimer: The stories posted here are user-submitted and are, in the nature of "ghost stories," largely unverifiable. HauntedPlaces.org makes no claims that any of the statements posted here are factually accurate. The vast majority of information provided on this web site is anecdotal, and as such, should be viewed in the same light as local folklore and urban legends.