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The advertised screening for 16
          September 1929, advised that
          accurately synchronised, full volume
          perfect sound, using all electric
          equipment would be used. No fake!
            The acoustics in the town hall are
          not too good (even today!) so just how
          clearly patrons heard the film’s sound-
          track with the full volume as promised
          in Holland’s advertisement, is a moot
          point! The Hollands definitely need
          further research.
            Dan Clifford operated the Lyric
          until June 1932. The depression was
          affecting the district badly, many
          farmers even selling their breeding
          stock. All the talk was about the bad
          times. Orchardists at Mypolonga were
          seeking visitors to inspect damage
          caused by excessive rains, and at the
          same time purchase fruit from them.
          The local paper regularly carried news
          or advertisements that another
          warehouse had ‘gone bust’.
            Gaumont British Kalee sound-on-
          disc projectors were installed at the
          Lyric some time in the 1930s. Details
          are unclear as Lyric advertisements
          disappeared from the Mt. Barker
          Courier for quite some time, probably
          due to the hard times. The program for
          Wednesday 16 July 1930, Rin Tin Tin
          in Frozen River, a silent film, was the
          last film advertised in the Mt. Barker
          Courier for about two years!
            In 1932 sound-on-film was installed,
          using locally made Benbow sound
          projectors. The next advertised program
          was for 1 July 1932. The theatre was
          still the Lyric, and the film was Bulldog
          Drummond, Ronald Colman’s first
          talkie. However, an accompanying
          article in the Courier made passing
          reference to …the arrangements of
          taking over the theatre at short notice,
          the management had to accept films
          booked by the previous lessee.
            Reference to the Lyric in the book,
          Thanks for the Memories indicates that
          the licence ‘as a place of public
          entertainment’ lapsed during Clifford’s
          time. By 1937 the Waterman Brothers
          had taken over, and renamed it The
          Ozone Theatre, in keeping with their
          extensive Ozone Theatre circuit,
          registered as Ozone Amusements Ltd.
          (1916). Watermans are believed to have
          paid £12,000, ($24,000) for the Lyric,
          the same as the original construction
                                            Same theatre with a name change: from top; the Lyric by night (MBHS); as the Ozone;
                                            look beyond the posters to glimpse the style of the foyer; scenic murals of the
                                            auditorium. Notice the rake of the floor. (These pics: Peter Smyth).

          12  2007 CINEMARECORD
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