South African Theatres and Cinemas - mostly gone

South Africa is negligent of its theatre and cinema heritage. I have grabbed this collection of remaining photos from where I can and in a hurry before they all disappear
Metro cinema, Johannesburg. The Metro Theatre was situated at the corner of  Bree  and Von Brandis Streets, Johannesburg and was opened by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer on 4th November 1932. It would become the largest four-wall cinema in South Africa with a seating capacity of 2800. Photo above was taken in 1934 during the run of 'Treasure Island' starring Wallace Beery and Jackie Cooper.

Metro cinema, Johannesburg. The Metro Theatre was situated at the corner of Bree and Von Brandis Streets, Johannesburg and was opened by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer on 4th November 1932. It would become the largest four-wall cinema in South Africa with a seating capacity of 2800. Photo above was taken in 1934 during the run of 'Treasure Island' starring Wallace Beery and Jackie Cooper.

Empire Johannesburg.  The Empire Theatre was situated in Commissioner Street at the corner of Kruis Street - diagonally opposite the Colosseum Theatre. It was a very impressive building and opened in September 1936 to form part of the African  Consolidated Theatres chain. The very stately and ornate auditorium had both stalls and circle seating and when used as a cinema

Empire Johannesburg. The Empire Theatre was situated in Commissioner Street at the corner of Kruis Street - diagonally opposite the Colosseum Theatre. It was a very impressive building and opened in September 1936 to form part of the African Consolidated Theatres chain. The very stately and ornate auditorium had both stalls and circle seating and when used as a cinema

Cape Town's first theatre, from an undated Maskew Miller publication of Lady Anne Barnard's diaries

Cape Town's first theatre, from an undated Maskew Miller publication of Lady Anne Barnard's diaries

Cinerama Cinema, Johannesburg. The Cinerama Theatre was situated in Claim Street, Johannesburg  and opened in April 1961. Its seating capacity was 993. The theatre was closed on 27 February 1986 and converted into a discotheque.

Cinerama Cinema, Johannesburg. The Cinerama Theatre was situated in Claim Street, Johannesburg and opened in April 1961. Its seating capacity was 993. The theatre was closed on 27 February 1986 and converted into a discotheque.

Monte Carlo cinema, Johannesburg

Monte Carlo cinema, Johannesburg

Being a flagship cinema, the Colosseum employed a concierge (who  controlled the queues - informing patrons about the availability of seats) at  least six doormen and a large number of usherettes - all decked out in  maroon-coloured uniforms. During the 1960s Ms. Lou Botha was the head  usherette, Mr. Van Der Linde the chief projectionist and the cinema was  managed by the distinguished George Seymour. After Seymour's death he  was succeeded by Henry  Ascar.

Being a flagship cinema, the Colosseum employed a concierge (who controlled the queues - informing patrons about the availability of seats) at least six doormen and a large number of usherettes - all decked out in maroon-coloured uniforms. During the 1960s Ms. Lou Botha was the head usherette, Mr. Van Der Linde the chief projectionist and the cinema was managed by the distinguished George Seymour. After Seymour's death he was succeeded by Henry Ascar.

Avalon cinema, Fordsburg, Johannesburg

Avalon cinema, Fordsburg, Johannesburg

Piccadilly, Yeoville, Johannesburg

Piccadilly, Yeoville, Johannesburg

Plaza cinema, Johannesburg

Plaza cinema, Johannesburg

20th Century Johannesburg. The decor could be described as 'modern contemporary' and certainly not atmospheric. The auditorium was decorated by Ernest Ullmann who used a giant relief map of the world on the auditorium walls as a symbolic figure of moving entertainment covering the hemispheres.

20th Century Johannesburg. The decor could be described as 'modern contemporary' and certainly not atmospheric. The auditorium was decorated by Ernest Ullmann who used a giant relief map of the world on the auditorium walls as a symbolic figure of moving entertainment covering the hemispheres.

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