B.F. Keith's Prospect Theatre opened its doors on Ninth Street at Fifth Avenue in Prospect Park on September 7, 1914. After the Final Curtain explains that at the time of its construction, it was heralded as an engineering marvel with its woodless construction and floating balcony that was advertised as being able to bear the weight of ten of the world's heaviest locomotives. The 2,381-seat theater would go on to host Vaudeville shows twice daily by acts like Sam & Kitty Norton, Nellie V. Nichols, and Joe Jackson before transitioning to keep up with the times in 1916, when it began showing silent films alongside live acts, later scored by its very own Moller organ.
The theater can be credited in some kinda way as the birthplace of the Three Stooges. After the Final Curtain explains,
In 1922 Ted Healy, a comedian from Brooklyn, was scheduled to perform at the theater but the acrobat in his act quit. As luck would have it, Moses Horwitz, an old childhood friend of Healy's who was also a vaudeville performer, was backstage waiting to say hello to him. Healy asked Horwitz, better known today as Moe Howard, to temporarily join his act and Horwitz agreed. The show was a huge hit and soon after Moe's brother Samuel (Shemp) joined them as Ted Healy and his Stooges. The temporary partnership ended up lasting over ten years before splitting up. In 1934 Howard, his other brother Jerome (Curly), and Larry Fine signed with Columbia Pictures as the Three Stooges. The theater closed its doors in 1967 when its entry level was converted into a C-Town supermarket. (It's now home to Steve's 9th Street Market.) Later in the 1980s, developers Gary Rosen and Jacob Bouganim bought the theater and converted the auditorium, baring the balcony, as well as the space behind the stage into 15 condos. What remains of the theater today is its prized floating balcony, hidden behind new walls.