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Melbourne version. Not surprisingly, as
          a former soldier in training near
          Brisbane, who spent many nights at the
          Regent, Gavin rated Brisbane overall as
          his favourite.
            The Regent, Sydney scored
          plaudits for its façade. Although
          comparisons are fraught because the
          styles were so different, Les Tod scored
          Sydney’s frontage as just ahead of
          Adelaide. Les Tod was also partial to
          the classical design of the Sydney and
          Adelaide foyers.
            Respondents were unanimous about
          one shortcoming of the Regent,
          Sydney: the balcony so close to the
          stage, although Gavin Drummond and
          Les Tod conceded that this compromise
          gave the interior ‘a sort of intimacy.’
            Some commentators deplored the
          covering up of much of the original
          proscenium when the screen was
          brought forward for CinemaScope. One
          positive from this: Les Tod credited
          Sydney with having the best
          CinemaScope screen.
            Since the main article favours the
          Regent, Adelaide, let another Adelaide
          observer, John Thiele have the last

            In 1968 two friends and I went on a
          ‘theatre-crawl’ to visit, and photograph
          the capital city Regents. Going to
          shows in each of them in the space of
          four weeks (the same James Bond
          movie was showing in them all) was a
          unique opportunity to make
          comparisons. First impressions are
                                             Regent, Sydney. An exterior to rival or surpass Adelaide was not followed through to
          lasting, but subsequent visits did not
                                             the interior. The main staircase was only adequate for such a theatre.
          change my views. They were all grand
                                             Images: Top, JTC and above Brian Pearson Collection.
          theatres, all definitely Regent Theatres,
          their differences giving them their  Manager, I learned that the screen had  In Melbourne I rated the upstairs
          individuality.                     to be replaced every two years because  barrel-vaulted foyer, as the most
            The long narrow entrance foyer to  of the grime. Imagine the long-term  impressive example of this space.
          the Regent, Brisbane did not impress  effect on the walls!              The auditorium was breathtaking.
          me, but it did have a beautiful pair of  The auditorium of the Regent,  Unlike the other Regents, a row of
          frescoes, one at each end, which I was  Sydney was much like that of Adelaide,  columns backed by gold curtains gave
          to discover in each of the capital city  with many of the same plaster  majesty to the balcony walls. Trough
          Regents. The barrel ceiling of the  mouldings. The arched windows each  lighting highlighted a different and
          upstairs foyer was somewhat shallow  side of the balcony were smaller and  wider proscenium arch, and it was joy
          compared with ours in Adelaide.    less ornate than those in Adelaide and  to hear the richness of the WurliTzer.
            The burnished copper finish of the  the proportions of the auditorium were  Over the years I returned to all of the
          interior did not appeal. Perhaps its  not quite as pleasing.         Regents, but the Regent, Melbourne
          original glamour had been soiled. A  I did not think that the green Act  became one of my favourites.
          new experience for me was watching  Drop was as appropriate for a Regent  I guess we were lucky in Adelaide.
          the movie through a haze of cigarette  as the traditional red of the other  Our Regent always looked immaculate.
          smoke. In a conversation with the  theatres.                         Only two years before it was gutted for

          18  2006 CINEMARECORD
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