Teatro Sierra Maestra
Calzada de Bejucal 30901, Rancho Boyeros,
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The Havana suburb of Ranch Boyeros grew up around what was then, in the early 1930’s, the new airport. The area was used for light industry and housing was built for its workers. The Teatro Lutgardita was built and opened in 1932 to provide entertainment for the local workers. This is Cuba’s only known Atmospheric style cinema and only one of four known in the world to have a Mayan/Atmospheric style treatment.
Designed by architects Evelio Govantes and Felix Cabarrocas, it has sparse Art Deco elements on its facade and its Atmospheric style interior is inspired by Mayan motifs. Notable features include the Mayan figures on the columns of the proscenium arch and the pair of ‘snake columns framing a doorway to its left. Some of its features have been copied from authentic Mayan sites such as Tikal, Chichen Itza etc. Above the ramparts of the trompe l'oeil stone walls are rural scenes below a darkened sky. The overall effect could be described as a 'Pueblo Deco’ style. The scenery designer Fernando Tarazona collaborated on the interior design. The balustrade along the balcony front, with its turned wooden posts evokes the traditional wooden ‘rejas’(window security grilles).
After closing as a cinema, it lay unused for many years. Recently in early 2007 work has begun on a renovation/restoration project. This is being funded by Ranch Boyeros ‘twin town’ in Spain; Torrejon de Ardoz, and a local Cuba solidarity organisation. New seats have been installed which came from a theatre in the Spanish town. The re-furbished building will also house two art/sculpture galleries and a multi-purpose hall for various community events.
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