HISTORIC CHARM MEETS MODERN FUNCTIONALLITY
About The Historic Gayety Theatre CollingwoodThis elegant Victorian jewel has been entertaining patrons since 1911.
A 300-seat (325 person) capacity on Collingwood’s main street in the heart of the Historic Heritage District.
The Theatre’s Art Deco appearance cleverly hides the modern amenities that make it a wonderful venue for the performing arts. The auditorium boasts a state of the art sound system supported by theatrical lighting, a sprung stage with ample wings on both sides, air-conditioning, comfortable, raked seating and continues the tradition of serving the best piping hot buttered popcorn in Town!
For many generations of Collingwood citizens, the historic Gayety Theatre has been a source of escape and entertainment within an intimate setting.
Some interesting facts
- 1911-1922 The Empire Theatre
- 1922-1927 The Rex Theatre
- 1927-Present The Gayety Theatre
- 1916 – The Empire theatre showed “The Count” Charlie Chaplin’s fifth film for Mutual Film Corporation. A DVD was released March 25th 2008.
- 1918-The Government declared Heatless Days -Conserve coal for the war Effort. Entertainment and theatres were ordered to close Feb 18th-March 1st.
- Fall of 1918- Spanish Influenza arrived with 1 in 6 being affected. (By 1920 50-100 million worldwide had died three to five percent of the world’s population making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in human history ). In mid October any non -essential buildings were closed down to prevent spread of the disease. Re-opening November 15th 1918 after thorough airing and fumigation.
- July 1922- some movies playing included: Broken Laws, North Nevada, The Ten Commandments.
- December 19th 1925- The matinee movie was about the Great Chicago Fire- Patron Mayor JR Arthur.
- May 1926- YPRES Film, a battle of WW1 was featured 1-30pm-11pm.
- December 1928- a lighted sign with 1500 bulbs was turned on by Mayor Arthur with Kiltie Band in Attendance and the theatre was officially known as Gayety.
- May 1929-Refitted for Talking Pictures, the 1st North of Toronto.
- The First talkie was “The Broadway Melody“. Followed by Singing Fool, starring Al Jolson. This was the 1st film with SOUND to win an Academy award for Best Picture.
- July 1937- “Keep Cool At The Gayety” air conditioning was installed.
- February 1938- News real showing the collapse of The International Bridge in Niagara Falls.
- 1994- Gayety Theatre incorporates “V” for Victory sign into their ads.
- 1958-The New Illuminated sign is erected, the one we see today.
- February 22nd 2003- After 90 years the Gayety Theatre CLOSED. The last movie was “Chicago”, how apt a movie with a Music Hall setting!
- May 23rd 2003- The Gayety Theatre reopened with the Second City Touring Company presentation of “Ice Cream Man Cometh”. With new and current owner Mr Sid Dickinson.