Feb 7, 2013

Monarch Theatre Interior: Lobby & Cinema

As an avid fan of the historic Monarch Theatre in Medicine Hat, Alberta, I was all too pleased to get private access to the building for my Around the Hat photo series. Opened in 1911, the Monarch is believed to be the oldest movie theatre in Canada that was built specifically for screening films. Today it's a charming movie house.

During my tour of the theatre I shot several hundred images of the lobby and cinema before eventually ending up in the projection room, behind the screen, and in the basement. There's no question that much of the Monarch's appeal is rooted in its history and old-fashioned character.  

The theatre plays everything from blockbusters to documentaries to art house flicks, and has even found opportunities to screen classics like Casablanca. In a city of just over 60,000 people, I think some often forget that it's rare for a place as diverse and unique as this to exist here.

From the rich red curtain to the new tin ceilings in the lobby, the Monarch has made tremendous strides since reopening in 2009. It's a beautiful and understated theatre that has made a significant effort to remain relevant, while also successfully embracing the history and heritage value of its downtown location. You owe it to yourself to see a movie here.

No comments :