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30 March 1967 Regent Theatre

 30 March 1967   Regent Theatre

On 30 March 1967 a charity variety show was held in the Regent Theatre to mark its closure for major renovations and alterations. These alterations reduced the grand theatre to two small cinemas with the foyer, including the marble staircase, and stalls lost to create a shopping arcade. Since then a further small cinema has been incorporated into the complex.

The Regent Theatre opened with glitter and glamour on the 29 June 1928. Described as a pleasure dome with its concealed lighting, soft carpets, paintings, tapestries, Italian statuary, and magnificent chandeliers, the theatre was the ultimate in movie theatre opulence. On opening night an 18 piece orchestra played the William Tell Overture to an accompaniment of changing coloured lights, followed by a stage show and a film, Flesh and the Devil, starring Greta Garbo and John Gilbert. The famous Wurlitzer organ was installed a few months later. Prices ranged from one shilling to two shillings and tenpence halfpenny.

The theatre closed for a time during the depression, but renovations in 1939, saw it emerge again as one of the city's leading theatres until the changes in the late 1960s. The Wurlitzer organ is now in St Peter's College.

Susan Marsden, Paul Stark, Patricia Sumerling (eds), Heritage of the City of Adelaide, Corporation of the City of Adelaide, 1990,
pp. 121-122
Michael Burden,  Lost Adelaide, Oxford University Press, 1983, p.181.

Tags: Regent Theatre

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