Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts

350 Madison Avenue,
Detroit, MI 48226

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edlambert
edlambert on October 30, 2014 at 2:57 pm

Additional note: The screen in the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood measures 86 feet wide along the arc and covers about 122 degrees, giving the screen’s depth of curve about 21 feet. The Dome offers much more space in width and height than does the Music Hall, but it still does not accommodate a screen with 146 degrees of arc.

edlambert
edlambert on October 30, 2014 at 2:21 pm

The Cinerama screen at the Music Hall did not encompass an arc of 146 degrees. The 66-foot wide screen (measured along the arc (curve) would have had to measure about 18 feet deep at the center, measured from the chord of the arc (that is, a straight line from one side of the screen to the other) at the center of the screen.

The Cinerama installation in various venues had to accommodate the physical character of the theater itself. A screen at the Music Hall, in order to have the depth of 18 feet, would have required a major reduction in the number of seats on the main floor since the screen itself could not take up any space on the stage but had to be constructed entirely outside and below stage level.

Redwards1
Redwards1 on February 22, 2014 at 10:49 am

There is an error in the description of the Cinerama screen. It was not 64 feet tall, it was 24 feet tall & 66 feet wide, with a 10 foot deep curve. I think the projection booth was moved to the rear of the first balcony for the reserved seat engagement of Lion In Winter (70mm Panavision) in 1968. The Cinerama screen was retained & the sound was excellent, in particular the deep bass resonance of John Barry’s thrilling score accompanying the opening credits. Dialogue was also crystal clear.

CSWalczak
CSWalczak on August 25, 2012 at 6:25 pm

There is an extensive gallery of photos of the restored theater here and here is a link to the Music Hall’s page at Roland Lataille’s Cinerama history site which has a considerable amount of detail about the Music Hall’s days as a Cinerama house and much memorabilia.

veyoung52
veyoung52 on November 27, 2004 at 4:00 pm

Re: the introductory remarks here, “…The Music Hall was only the second Cinerama theater in the world, and supposedly the most successful.” It might not have been the most successful in terms of boxoffice, those honors probably going to the New York and Hollywood Warner’s. But the MH still racked up some impressive honors. “This Is Cinerama” ran 99 weeks, bested only by the DC Warner (100 wks), NY Warner (125 wks), and the Hollywood Warner (132 wks). However, the MH’s run of “Cinerama Holiday” was the longest of all at 81 weeks. An executive of Cinerama Theatre Operations stated in a 1957 interview in “Variety” that bus and train excursions accounted for about 40 percent of Cinerama’s attendance. By the time this was printed, a “I Have Seen Cinerama Four Times Club” had 176 local members. It was also estimated – and this is trivia at its best – that in the first 4 years of Cinerama exhibition, “…the theatre’s curtain has traveled back and forth equivalent to a distance of 75 miles. A staff of 11 projectionists used more than 1,200 pairs of nylon gloves for inspecting and rewinding the film.”

GREGORY
GREGORY on November 4, 2003 at 10:33 pm

Saw my first Cinerama film at the Music Hall: SOUTH SEAS ADVENTURE. I remember the screen being huge. The sound system was the best I ever heard before or since. Also saw HOW THE WEST WAS WON.