Sunshine Building/Sunshine Theater
The Sunshine Building is one of Albuquerque's most recognizable and active entertainment spots. This six-story building was done by the famed Henry C. Trost in 1924. Until the 1970s it held offices, jewlwery stores, and a theater palace (920 seats); the theater palace being Albuquerque's first. By 1980, the offices and jewelry store closed down and the theater was converted into a venue for concerts. The first film played in the Sunshine was "Scaramouche" in 1923. Now the building houses some offices and used for concerts. It's famed neon sign which attracted tourists was unfortunately taken down and moved elsewhere. In television, the exterior of the building was used to designate the site of a fictional US Marshals Witness Protection service building for the show, "In Plain Sight."
Backstory and Context
The Sunshine Theater, which occupies a significant portion of the building, was Albuquerque's first movie palace. The first film shown there was Scaramouche, starring Ramón Novarro and accompanied by a special orchestra for the occasion. The theater stopped showing first-run movies in 1974 and closed completely in the 1980s, but has since been remodeled into a popular live music venue. The Sunshine Theater has hosted a number of notable acts such as The Strokes, Snoop Dogg, Deltron 3030, Stone Temple Pilots, The Smashing Pumpkins, Queens of the Stone Age, The Dead Weather, Arctic Monkeys, Modest Mouse, Rancid, Coheed and Cambria, Awolnation, Cannibal Corpse, Ratatat, Social Distortion, Pennywise, Hollywood Undead, Deftones, Nightwish, Melanie Martinez, Damien Marley and Deadmau5 among others. The Sunshine Theater's set up is an open floor, a large balcony, and a bar that seats a 21 and older audience, in all they accommodate about 1,000 people. The theater is the most popular venue in the Albuquerque metro area to accommodate smaller but still notable acts, many with five or more shows in one month.
"Historic Landmarks". City of Albuquerque Planning Department.
Potts, Leanne (July 22, 2003). "Sunshine Theater's Appeal Is Its All-Ages Music Shows". Albuquerque Journal. NM. pp. A5.