London Coliseum

38 St. Martin's Lane,
London, WC2N 4ES

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curmudgeon on April 28, 2015 at 7:03 am

A long shot. I had the honour of working for the ENO in the Box Office at the Coliseum in the mid ‘70’s. My name is John and I was on a working holiday visa from Australia when I was lucky enough to secure this dream job. My manager at this time – who I regretfully cannot recall his name – offered to approach Lord Harwood (ENO)to intercept on my behalf for a visa extension. Long story short, family commitments, un-requited love affair (sob) and sub standard accommodation saw me throw in the towel and return to Australia. Would love to contact anyone who may remember me from this time. I was sometimes called “Wombat” or “Possum” (no PC in those days!)and had to be reminded time and again that there was no “H” in reference to “La Belle Helene”.

CSWalczak on August 18, 2012 at 9:00 am

There is some information about this traveling Cinerama theatre here.

Robbie25646 on August 18, 2012 at 7:28 am

Ken Roe, What memories you stirred in me, I can remember seeing all the Cinerama films you mentioned. Do you by any chance have any photos or info on the travelling Cinerama theatre that toured the UK in the mid 1960’s?

cultman1 on October 21, 2011 at 2:48 am

Ken do you have any photos of The Astoria Cinerama Screen? I see plenty of info on the cinema itself, and early pics of the auditorium, but nothing on the Cinerama/todd AO days? thanks

TLSLOEWS on November 8, 2010 at 12:40 pm

Very, Very, Nice.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on November 22, 2008 at 11:11 am

Two vintage views of the auditorium, as seen from the stage:
In the 1930’s:
View link
In the 1970’s:
View link

Ian on September 9, 2008 at 5:52 am

Two exterior photos taken in September 2008 here:–

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Ken Roe
Ken Roe on January 29, 2006 at 2:46 am

Two views of the London Coliseum auditorium and proscenium, taken before the recent 2004 refurbishment. (When a Cinerama theatre, the screen extended in-front of the eight stage boxes):
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rsalters (Ron Salters)
rsalters (Ron Salters) on December 10, 2005 at 8:43 am

I saw the late June Bronhill on stage in “The Merry Widow” at the London Coliseum in Sept. 1959. What a beautiful, glamourous, huge theatre. It must have made a great Cinerama house. I have attended several ENO performances there over the years. A wonderful theatre, even the outside walls are interesting— the facade, for sure; plus the north sidewall, and the rear stage wall. An outstanding theatre.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on December 10, 2005 at 4:00 am

A recent photograph of the facade of the London Coliseum Theatre:
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Ken Roe
Ken Roe on November 17, 2005 at 1:07 am

A recent photograph of the Baroque styled tower over the entrance to the Coliseum. Note the name on top that revolves:
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Ken Roe
Ken Roe on March 27, 2005 at 7:07 am

Films were shown at the Coliseum from the early days when Kinemacolour films and newsreels were shown as part of the variety bill. In March/April 1933 “King King” had a run, followed by the sensational venereal disease drama “Damaged Lives”. It was briefly used a newsreel cinema from late September 1940 during the ‘blitz’ on London.

In June 1961, MGM took over whilst their Empire Theatre, Leicester Square was being re-modelled and the Coliseum screened re-issues of “Gone With the Wind”, “Rope” and a new release “Two Weeks in Another Town” among others, until Cinerama was installed.

Cinerama opened with “The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm” followed by attractions screened in 70mm Cinerama which included; “Grand Prix”, “It’s A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, World”, “The Magnificent Showman”, “La Fayette”, “The Flaming Years”, “The Bible” and a revival of “Around the World In 80 Days”.