Page 8 - CinemaRecord Edition 3-2002 #37
P. 8

Joseph Cotton in Love Letters and it
                                             stayed with Paramount, MGM and
                                             British films and the later inclusion of
                                             continental films.
                                                And what of the story that the
                                             theatre was once The Nepean? Brian
                                             Miller offers two suggestions.
                                                The word Nepean was definitely
                                             there in render on the façade. Possibly
                                             the theatre did open under this name
                                             earlier than 1925. Hoyts may have
          The Mayfair:                       decided to re-badge it when they took
          Gaps in the Record                 over. Another possibility is that the                                 ➧
             If there was such a thing as an  owners intended to open it as The
          orphan theatre then Gardenvale would  Nepean but when Hoyts became the  An important footnote to our story. The
                                                                                Herald Sat. 8 August 1925. For the curious
          surely qualify. No commercial photos  lessee they had other ideas. If it did  reader struggling with the fine print the
          of the building have come to light, it  operate for a time as The Nepean what  theatres in the Circuit at this time were
          may have been closed for extended  years were they? And for how long was  Cinema Richmond, Palace Glenferrie,
          periods, there is uncertainty about an  it closed in the thirties? Perhaps the  Kinema Albert Park, Renown Elsternwick,
          alternative name and there is no Health  local Brighton papers hold the answers.  Hoyts Camberwell, Hoyts Clifton Hill,
          Department file on The Gardenvale,  A reader may like to be the sleuth.  ★  Hoyts Canterbury, Dux Albert Park, Hoyts
          The Nepean nor The Mayfair to                                         Essendon, Hoyts Glenhuntly, Hoyts
          solve the puzzle. In other words it is                                Ivanhoe. (Source: State Library of
          what CATHS-V research is all about.                                   Victoria.)
             The opening date for the New
          Gardenvale under the Hoyts banner is
          clear. After the formation of Hoyts
          Theatres Ltd. the company changed
          their advertising policy. From about
          1927 the programs for premier suburban
          theatres were the only ones which
          appeared in The Herald. Most suburban
          theatres at this time relied on day bills
          and posters in shopping centres.
             The Herald remains a blank on the
          ‘lesser’ theatres until 1936 when
          theatres started to advertise under one
          of three mastheads. By this time the
          New Gardenvale had lost the ‘New’
          and was simply The Gardenvale. It
          had also transferred to the
          Independent Theatres column. The
          theatre was allegedly closed for some
          of those ‘missing years.’
             After showing Sweethearts with
          Jeannette MacDonald on Friday 8
          Sept. 1939 the theatre was absent from
          the column for five weeks, presumably
          closed for renovations. It re-opened
          Sat. 14 October with Robert Donat in
          The Citadel. Can a change of address
          mean more business? For this hard
          luck house anything was worth a try.
                                                                           The first appearance of the Independent
          The theatre was now listed as the
                                                                           Suburban Theatres column – The Herald 2 May
          North Brighton Gardenvale and                                    1936. The suburb of Gardenvale has the
          stayed that way until 1946.                                      Gardenvale Theatre.
             The first night as The Mayfair
          Gardenvale was Frid. 5 July 1946
          when the theatre was the venue for a
          direct broadcast of the 3KZ Sports
          Parade from 7.30 pm. Saturday night  Change of suburb. The theatre is
                                            now in Brighton North. The Herald
          was films again – Jennifer Jones and
                                            Wed.17 Jan. 1945.
          8   2002 CINEMARECORD
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