Interview Eric Forneret; Oct. 30, 2012

Tutorial_40Eric: When I was little Alica, and I didn’t realize it back then it wasn’t til later. It was a segregated society. When you went to the movie theater there were two entrances to the theater. There was a white entrance and there was a black entrance. I mean you went through separate entrances into the theater. If you went to wherever you were there were separate drinking fountains. There was a white fountain and a black fountain. Sometimes there was a white fountain and a hose. If you were out and you were gonna go to the bathroom there was men, women and colored. There were three bathrooms.

I wasn’t aware of it. At five years old you don’t go to the bathroom by yourself. And I mean first of all, you didn’t go out. I mean you went out to church, you went to visit relatives, I don’t remember ever in New Orleans until we moved out of there ever going to a restaurant once in my life back then. I remember going to the movies because Rodney would take me to the movies.

There was uptown and downtown in New Orleans. When we were little Dufossat St. is uptown Rushablade was downtown. We used to go to the Circle Theater. Now I remember when I went back to New Orleans I was probably around 12, I went back with my grandparents one summer. I spent a summer down there. With my grandparents. I was about 12, 12 or 13 something lie that. I remember it was around the time, The Beatles were already out so I had to have been about 8th grade. Because I remember house of the rising sun, because there is a house in new Orleans that they call the rising sun. I remember going to a show with my cousin then and that was the first time I ever realized there were separate entrances. We went to see Elvis Presley’s Viva Las Vegas at the movies and that was really the firs time I ever realized there were separate entrances to the theater and that there were separate water fountains, and that kind of stuff. I remember that movie, the show was packed, I mean this was a big Elvis movie, he was huge. And the song came on, this would have been early 60s. And I remember the song Viva Las Vegas and I tell you the whole theater sang the song during the movie.

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New Orleans Circle Theater [click]

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