For many visitors to the Michigan Theater and Redford Theatre, the unique movies might have been the first attraction. But after a few trips, they were probably also drawn to the warm melodies of the Barton theater organs of each movie house.
Archive for September, 2006
As I wandered the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor on the evening of September 12, 2006, I was fascinated by the many contrasts of the old and the new. The theater was hosting the Grand Opening of its MicroCinema Gallery, a collection of video screens that were scattered throughout the Grand Foyer and other parts of the theater.
The final credits rolled as the crowd basked in the afterglow of an emotionally powerful movie experience. When the screen gave Thank You’s to the people of Mackinac Island and the staff of the Grand Hotel, many people broke into applause. Soon, the curtains closed, and patrons filed out of the Redford Theatre, with the romantic melodies of the 1980 movie Somewhere in Time flowing through their senses.
“Welcome back to the Detroit Film Theatre,” greeted Larry Baranski of the DFT before the September 15, 2006 showing of the French film Army of Shadows. On this second weekend of the Fall/Winter 2006 season, Larry updated patrons on the progress of the DFT renovation project that has been going on for several years in conjunction with other improvements at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
In August 2001, the Detroit Film Theatre showed the Chinese film The Road Home, about a businessman who returns to the village of his childhood for his father’s funeral and makes some heartfelt discoveries about his parents.
Back in the 1950s, the Redford Theatre had Kiddie Cartoon Parties, with special Saturday afternoons of cartoons and other treats for children. A September 9, 2006 Redford showing of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory brought back memories of those days, complete with an audience that included many excited young boys and girls.