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Martinsville's Rives Theatre a total loss after fire

MARTINSVILLE, Va. – A Martinsville landmark and historic building more than 90 years old was destroyed by fire.

The city's fire department was still at the Rives Theatre Monday morning, working to keep the flames from spreading other neighborhood buildings, but the theatre itself is a complete loss.

After more than seven decades of success as a first-run movie house, the Rives had been transformed into a live music venue.

Martinsville Fire and EMS said the flames were already through the roof when they arrived just before 10 p.m. Sunday.

"There's not much left. We've already started our initial investigation, speaking to the property owners and managers hoping they can point us in the right direction, but there's just so much damage, it may be hard to determine," said Martinsville Fire Department Chief Ted Anderson.

Anderson said everyone inside at the time of the fire got out safely.

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Martinsville Police say the Rives Theatre on Church Street is currently on fire.

Martinsville Fire Department says the fire started around 8:30 Sunday night.

Two ladder trucks on scene working to put it out. The fire department say no one was inside at the time of the fire.

Fire Chief Ted Anderson says the roof is gone and crews are in a defense mode trying to protect exposures and keeping it contained. 

Once the fire is out, crews will begin their investigation.