612 8th Avenue SW,
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The Uptown Theatre in downtown Calgary, in the Barron Building, was opened in 1951 by Jacob Barron, owner of the National Theatres chain of cinemas as its flagship theater.
The theater was built in the late Art Moderne style and is one of the finest examples of the architectural style in Calgary. The lobby of the Uptown has been compared to the Art Deco/Moderne buildings of Miami Beach.
In 1993, the theater was remodeled and restored, and the former balcony, which had been converted into a second auditorium in the 1970’s, was made into a small stage area for live performances.
Additionally, the main auditorium was completely restored to its original appearance, including the restoration of plaster torches on each side of the large screen and brocade curtains (which still open before the main feature). As a gesture to the expectations of modern audiences, 100 seats were removed from the main auditorium to expand legroom for all patrons.
The Uptown Theatre specialized in art and foreign film, and presented new Canadian short features before each main presentation. It stopped screening movies in 2012.
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