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In the heart of downtown Durham since 1926, the Carolina Theatre has become one of its city’s most beloved institutions. After opening as the Durham Auditorium, the venue was renovated three years later and renamed the Carolina Theatre, a movie theater that also presented stage shows and concerts. By the 1940s and 1950s, the city-owned Carolina Theatre had become Durham’s most majestic showplace for film and the performing arts, with live shows featuring such noteworthy stars as Ronald Reagan, Katharine Hepburn and many other celebrities of the day.
In March 1978, after economic conditions had forced the closure and a proposed demolition of the Carolina Theatre the year before, the City of Durham leased the venue to the Carolina Cinema Corporation with Dr. Monte Moses as president. Through the late 1970s and the 1980s, Connie Moses, the wife of Monte, and her close friend Pepper Fluke organized a legion of volunteers and spearheaded a successful effort to save, preserve and renovate the Carolina Theatre.
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