Sunday, 30 August 2015

Behind the Scenes of the Regent Theatre, Picton Ontario

Episode 46 of the Start To Continue Podcast included an interview with Projectionist Luke from the historic Regent Theater located in Picton,Ontario.  Bill was also lucky enough to be granted an insider's tour of the facility, including subbasements, offices and backstage green rooms.....Please enjoy all the shots, and don't forget to listen to the fascinating interview featured in the podcast.

The Regent is a rare example of an Edwardian Opera House, with a stage that is as large as that of the Royal Alexandra in Toronto. It was designed by architects Warrington and Page for George and Ellen Cook, who presented both vaudeville shows and motion pictures there.

The Regent Theatre is a theatre located at 224 Main Street in PictonOntario. It opened in 1922

Ticket Booth

Where to find the letters for the marquis 

Luke, displaying the incredible high tech device for changing the letters


Old school ticket grinder

Staff only! The way to the projection booth

Metal clad door leads to original film prep room, followed by projection room

Digital film, stored in hard drives, arrive in these

Splicing table, reel storage

Splicing table fixes film no more

Mr Bean Movie left befind

Original peep hole to see movie playing from prep table...since covered over

Through another metal clad door to the projectors

Modern film projector now rarely used

Peep hole where one of the original carbon rod projectors once shot from

The three platter system used to feed and take up the film

The 'old' sound system for film.  The CDROMs were capable of synched audio playback with the film reel

New digital system! Doremi plays back the digital movie file

Digital projector 

New peep hole beside the old one

There's your movie!

Looking back through room

Continue through projection booth to offices which are above the lobby.  This is the former living spaces of the Cooks

Promotional room

Offices with a used to be the owners apartment before it was offices

That's an old freakin sink

Stairs back to street

Secret door to the basement


6 foot sign from former Main St men's clothier 

Cool old door leads to now floored over trap doors

Old furnace


Vintage door hardware

Old foundation 

Old school floor joists, use the whole log

Broken neon tubes.  Regents trademark cross from top of crown

Marquis bulbs

Back upstairs, lets check out the popcorn maker! Underneath, flavouring, kernels, and oil (self feeding)

Popcorn with a flick of a switch

Looking back towards the lobby

View from the stage to the back of the house

One of the two balconies, now decoration only

Behind the mesh movie screen, three big time speakers

Backstage, call sheet goes here

Backstage, staircase leading down under stage

Shockingly spacious green room

Dressing rooms

Orig chair

Men shower here.  Hand painted tin sign worn with age (I wanted that bad!)

Sandwich board outside

Buisness end of the new projector. DLP

Two reel system was used before the three platter system.  Lead out to projector on top, back to take up reel on bottom

Projection booth wall.  The two slit windows are where the original two carbon rod projectors were mounted

Live event booth at back of house. Sound and light control

Thank you Regent Theatre for the outstanding hospitality and thank you of course to your brilliant and fastidious projectionist Luke.  Don't forget to listen to his fascinating interview featured in the podcast.  You are guaranteed to learn something new.

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