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"Raise the Rialto" is an energetic awareness campaign designed to increase public knowledge about renovations needed to reopen it doors, restoring the theater to its original purpose as a film, music and art exhibition venue.
The Rialto Theater opened in 1925 in Bozeman’s historic downtown district. During the 20th century, this popular venue had many owners and ultimately defined its niche as a prominent showcase for Montana arts and culture, and independent film. The theater was last operated by Carmike Cinemas, and officially closed its doors in 2005. It was later sold to a development group who intended to turn the theater into condominiums, but the economic downturn prevented the redesign from becoming reality.  After the condominium project failed, the theater sat empty and neglected for more than five years. During this time, it was the only abandoned building in Bozeman's beautiful downtown.

Both long-time residents and newcomers have expressed a desire to have the theater remain a theater. Many Bozemanites were disappointed to learn the Rialto had been gutted and damaged in the process of attempting to redefine its purpose. For some, the damage disturbed their happy memories of a theater they thought was gone for good. Many fondly remember the Rialto as a special place to gather and enjoy film as a family, with friends, or on a date. Some even recall having their first kiss while in the audience at The Rialto.

In November 2010, SRO Live purchased The Rialto with the intention of opening it up as a soundstage with studio audience recording capabilities. In doing so, SRO Live intends to restore the theater to its original purpose as a community gathering place for arts and culture. It will complete its plan in two phases. First, SRO will reopen the Rialto's doors in the Summer 2012 after completing structural repairs, putting up a fresh coat of new paint and laying new carpet. Next, while maintaining the historical look and feel of the turn-of-the century theater on the outside, SRO Live will  fully modernize its capabilities on the inside in order to digitally broadcasting music and other artistic content world-wide.

With its historical integrity restored, Gallatin Valley residents will once again have their very own local theater to enjoy independent film, musical entertainment, artist exhibitions, local, national and regional book signings, as well as educational speaker series in conjunction with local educational institutions and associated community organizations.
Rialto Theater, circa 1940