Bringing a dream to life – Vision centers on creating a movie theater in an 1884 bank building

A 1960 photo of Carminati Grocery fades into a rendering of what the future Majestic Theater may appear.

By BARBARA GREEN
Mark Chancellor, at the age of 30, calls himself an “old soul.”
His career as a lighting designer may have him on the cutting edge of music, but he wants to bring back a historic building back to life by creating a movie theater right in the heart of Montague.
This summer Chancellor bought the former First National Bank of Montague on the southwestern corner of the courthouse square in Montague. It was built in 1884.
After the bank closed, it was later home to Bell Phone, Carminati Grocery and Prime Cut Steakhouse. This dilapidated structure will demand a complete overhaul to fulfill this unique vision for its future.
The dreamer
Mark Chancellor grew up in the Alvord area with his parents Charles and Marsha Chancellor. His father was a Dallas firefighter, who when he retired became an electrician. He now resides in Bowie.
Mark’s parents divorced when he was young, and he spent summers with his dad in the Bowie area. He attended high school one year in Alvord and then completed high school in Dallas. After graduating from a Dallas arts school and McMurray University, he pursued a career in lighting design that has led him around the world.

The location

Moving into this next phase of his life, Chancellor began looking for the right building. It had to be at least two stories in order to provide a balcony, but he also wanted “A building with the right story.”

He checked out the old theater building in Bowie, but it didn’t have the right historic fit.
He also looked at the city auditorium in Bowie, but could not work a deal. Chancellor also was solicited by other locals who would love to have the theater in their town. However, the right building “did not speak to him “until he checked out a run down mess of a property in Montague.

Read the full feature in your weekend News.

Mark Chancellor power washes the exterior of the old bank building. (Photo by Barbara Green)
Mark Chancellor power washes the exterior of the old bank building. (Photo by Barbara Green)

 

1 Comment on Bringing a dream to life – Vision centers on creating a movie theater in an 1884 bank building

  1. I owned a restaurant in that building in 1996 and 1997 (The Kounty Seat Cafe) but had to close it because the septic tank wasn’t up to standard and the owner, at that time, wouldn’t up grade it. I have hated to see it deteriorate over the years. Due to the history, I always thought it could be a historical designation.

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