Metro Theatre

99 William Street,
Perth, WA 6000

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Metro Theatre - William Street - Perth

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Perth’s Metro Theatre, located on William Street started life as the Queen’s Hall (opened 19th April, 1899). Among the early artists to appear there were Dame Nellie Melba and Clara Butt. With the advent of film, Queen’s Hall became the venue for Vic’s Pictures.

In 1927, the Hoyts Theatre chain took over the lease, with architects Bohringer, Taylor and Johnson transforming it into the Regent Theatre, complete with chandeliers imported from Italy and a Wurlitzer organ. The opening film was “Three Bad Men” with George O'Brien and Olive Borden.

It 1938, Hoyts Theatres gave up the lease to MGM Theatres, and the theatre was again transformed, this time by architects Baxter, Cox and Leighton, who gave it the full Art Deco style treatment and was renamed Metro Theatre. It remained one of Perth’s most stylish, comfortable and most-loved theatres until its closure on 13th October 1973, its final film being a revival of “Gone With the Wind”. It was demolished in February 1974.

Contributed by barryinperth

Recent comments (view all 9 comments)

barryinperth
barryinperth on July 28, 2005 at 11:13 pm

In 1950, Perth’s Metro Theatre screened MGM’s THE REFORMER AND THE REDHEAD, starring June Allyson and a lion cub named Herman. At the time, two lion cubs had just been born at the Perth Zoo. Marketing opportunity! The zoo named the female cub ‘June’ and the male ‘Herman’. In the image that is linked below, we see one of the Metro’s box office girls (‘June’) posing with ‘Herman’, one of the two cubs. It’s a fun pic!

‘JUNE’ AND LION CUB ‘HERMAN’ POSE AT THE METRO BOX OFFICE, PERTH

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markn
markn on July 4, 2009 at 4:55 pm

Theatre was also named The Regent before Metro Theatre:

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Photo of Regent auditorioum in 1932 where seating was 2000, it was reduced to 1405 in 1938 and change to Art Deco style and renamed Metro:

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markn
markn on July 4, 2009 at 5:04 pm

Exterior Regent photo from 1929

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Jonjon
Jonjon on October 8, 2013 at 5:20 am

My Sister worked at The Metro from mid 1960s till marriage in the early 70s. She warched the tickertape parade of Neal Armstrong , John Collins & Buz Aldrin motorcade down William St in 1969 from the balcony fronting over William St that had an outside doorway from the bio box upstairs. I saw one of my earliest vague memory films at The Metro, it was MGM’s ‘The Shoes of the Fisherman’ in the late 60s. This is a great site. Im facinated with movie theatres & the MGM Studio lot in Culver City USA. Will see if my old Albany WA theatres are listed. Would be a hoot, they wete demolished decades ago.

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on April 30, 2015 at 11:30 pm

There was two theatre organs in the Metro Theatre(I think of the organs might have been in Wesley Church(Perth) before being installed in the theatre?). One of the organs is now in Hale college(Wembley Downs),the other organ is now in the Karrinyup Comminity Centre.

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on June 2, 2015 at 10:48 pm

After the Metro theatre was demolished in February 1972,the site was used to build a the(head office?) of Perth building society(later Challenge Bank,now Westpac). I believe that during the demolishon,there one of the beams in the theatre building was hard to dislodge. There is a bas-relief that survived from the demolishon gracing the walls of Exit Nightclub(in Stirling Street,Northbridge),pictured in the book,Stage Screen and Stars(page 24).

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on July 20, 2015 at 1:01 am

The Metro Theatre close in October 1973 with “Gone with the wind” to a sold out audiece. As the last few feet of film went through the projector gate, a slide of “Leo the Lion ” was super imposed on the screen and the lights came up slowly, the sound of a lone piper then being heard as he slowly walked down the aisles playing The Last Lament. This truly was a wonderful tribute to this warm, friendly cinema that had always been popular. Many patrons were seen leaving with tears streaming from their eyes, remembering the good old days when they had sat in the theatre watching many a silent and sound melodrama through the years. The Metro Theatre was demolished and replaced with Perth Building Society(later called Challenge Bank,now called Westpac). Perth Building society had a time capsule in the side of the staircase that went around the lift that said to opened sometime in the year 2000,if it was opened, i didn’t hear about it,i have no idea what was inside the time capsule,there could have been some stuff to do with the Theatres that were there!? There is some information about the Theatre organs at the website( http://www.oswa.org.au/waorgans/perthmetro ).

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on July 20, 2015 at 1:07 am

The Metro Theatre closed on 13/10/1973. There is articule about the closure in the West Australian newspaper on 15/10/1973(page 14).

davidcoppock
davidcoppock on July 21, 2015 at 10:39 pm

The Bank building has been rebuilt as Wesley Quarter.

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