The New Dryden

Posted by on Feb 28 2013 | Motion Pictures, Other

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The newly renovated Dryden Theatre opens this weekend with a completely new look – darker walls, new seats, carpeting on all floor areas, along with new ceiling and aisle lighting that is reminiscent of the great cinema houses of the past. These updates significantly enhance the viewing experience by improving sound absorption and minimizing reflection on the screen.
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In addition, the Dryden remains one of only four theaters in the world equipped for the projection of original nitrate film (manufactured before 1951) as well as every major film format in the medium’s history. The renovation’s installation of a Barco digital projector now allows Eastman House to present the wealth of contemporary digital cinema and the installation of automated masking allows the screen to optimally accommodate all cinematic formats.

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Both enhancements further support the Museum’s commitment to honor the aesthetic choices of filmmakers of all eras. Additionally, a new loop system for the hard-of-hearing further assures the accommodation and comfort of all patrons. The newly-renovated Dryden will provide today’s—and generations of tomorrow’s— movie-goers with an exceptional cinematic experience by combining the ambience of the classic movie house of the 1950s with the comfort and technology of 2013 and beyond.

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See you at the movies!

 

 

More on the Dryden Theatre Renovation:
Part I, The Curtain Stays
Part II, Seatless
Part III, Cement, Lighting, and Accessibility
Part IV, Painting, Listening System and Digital Projection
Part V, Stage and Carpet
Part VI, Seats and Projection Booth
 
 

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Eastman House Giveaway: Two Tickets to the Dryden Theatre Reopening with Alexander Payne

Posted by on Feb 22 2013 | Motion Pictures

down to the wire, the Dryden one week before reopening

The day has almost come. The Dryden Theatre will reopen its doors Saturday March 2, 2013 for a fresh cinematic experience and new chapter in film and digital technology.

We are thrilled to give away a pair of tickets for our opening night celebration. The evening will  feature a screening of the “comic, tragic, and deeply empathetic” film, SIDEWAYS followed by a Q&A with special guest and Academy Award® winning writer-director Alexander Payne.
Want your chance at being a part of this historical evening? Just follow these simple steps:

1. Become a fan of our Dryden Theatre Facebook page:

2. Then, do one of the following:

-Retweet this post (include both @eastmanhouse and @drydentheatre)

-Or leave us a comment below telling us why you should be the winner!

 

Contest starts today – we’ll pick a winner and announce Thursday February 28, at 7:30 p.m. EST.

Or take no chances and buy your tickets today.

 

We’ve been talking about the renovation and upgrades all along the way – check out our series, via Theatre Manager, Kolbe Resnick.

 

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Dryden Theatre Renovation Series: Seats and Projection Booth

Posted by on Feb 14 2013 | Technology

The moment you’ve all been waiting for is here: the seats have been fully installed. The seat parts arrived Monday morning and sat in the lobby in boxes as preparations for their installation began. All day Monday holes were drilled through the carpet and the legs of the chairs were bolted in. Working into the night Monday, the backs were attached to the legs throughout the balcony. By 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, the backs and seat cushions had all been installed and the seat numbers were stapled in. Barbara Galasso, our in-house photographer,  took some great photos of the seat installation and of the finished product.

Installation of the digital projector has begun. The Barco projector was delivered on Monday. Installing it into the booth however, is not an easy process. Before anything could begin Chief Projectionist Dave Rodriguez and the team from Boston Light and Sound, a company devoted to designing entertainment centers, specializing in projection booth maintenance and installations, had to wait until the chairs were completely installed to avoid damage to the projectors currently in there from dust. Once the chairs were finished (early Wednesday morning) work in the projection booth began. There are a number of factors in the installation process. The projector must be connected to the equipment currently in the booth and allow the continuation of the use of the other projection systems without obstructing the process. With the rather large size of the digital projector and the limited space in the booth, it is a bit of a puzzle to figure out how everything will fit, yet Dave and the BL&S crew are up to the challenge and rearrangement of the booth equipment is already in progress. Once everything is in place, the projector will need to be calibrated, focused, and color balanced and they will be testing the projector for the remainder of the week and into next.

We now have three projection systems: the new Barco digital projector (allowing us to show the newest DCP releases as well as DCP restorations of classic films), the Kinoton projectors (which have served us over the past 6 years as we’ve screened 35mm and 16mm), and of course the Century projectors (which have served us for 60 years, enabling us to screen Nitrate film—we are one of only four theaters in the country to be able to do so).

Another exciting installation taking place, also by BL&S, is the rigging of motors for the automatic adjustable masking. Four motors, one behind each corner of the screen, will be operated by controls in the booth. When activated they can automatically bring the masking to the desired aspect ratio.

Although the pictures are great, they really don’t compare to physically being in the theatre. We look forward to seeing all of you in our new theatre and the reactions you will have as you enter.

More on the Dryden Theatre Renovation:
Part I, The Curtain Stays
Part II, Seatless
Part III, Cement, Lighting, and Accessibility
Part IV, Painting, Listening System and Digital Projection
Part V, Stage and Carpet

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Dryden Theatre Renovation Series: Stage and Carpet

Posted by on Feb 06 2013 | Motion Pictures

Freshly stained stage

The theater really seems to be coming together. This past week the stage was refinished with a beautiful black matte finish (and will match nicely with the curtain). The texture of the wood is still very much visible and the stage itself looks like new. Along with the staining the electric circuits in the stage were completely repaired and carpeting will be attached along the edges next week.

A new feature you will no doubt notice upon our reopening in March will be the advancement of the first row. The front row on the floor will be much closer to the stage than before allowing for more space between the rows behind and therefore allowing them to yield more leg room. So for those of you sitting in this row on March 2, you’ll be only a few feet from Alexander Payne during his Q&A!

LED aisle strips install

The theater trim has been painted red and the carpet has been laid down on the ground floor. While the painting was a simple task that took about one day, the carpeting of the balcony is a much more arduous process and is expected to take the entirety of next week.The back stairways have been completely carpeted and the noticeable differences include a dampened sound and a much softer feel underneath your sneakers.

Carpet install

The final step of the staircase in the balcony has been heightened and extended creating a landing on the balcony. The result is surprising. This has created more space for the aisle rows near the front and allows for more room to move once you get to the balcony.

I had the privilege of visiting the projection booth in progress. The floor has all new tile and the walls have been repainted. It is exciting to witness the careful preparation for the digital projector and the care that is being taken to keep our film projection equipment in the best possible condition.

We are still inviting anyone who purchased seats to send us pictures of their new home. You can send them directly to me at kresnick@geh.org or you can post them on our Dryden Facebook Page.

More on the Dryden Theatre Renovation:
Part I, The Curtain Stays
Part II, Seatless
Part III, Cement, Lighting, and Accessibility
Part IV, Painting, Listening System and Digital Projection
Part V, Stage and Carpet

 
 

 
 
 

 

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Dryden Theatre Renovation: Painting, Listening System, and Digital Projection

Posted by on Jan 28 2013 | Motion Pictures

Painting the Dryden

Painting: Two very exciting cosmetic improvements have been made in the Dryden in the past week. First, the theater has been painted. The deep purple of the walls is complete with the repainted black ceiling. Once the golden curtain is re-hung the combination will be astonishing. Second, the lights in the coves on either side of the theater were installed. These lights shine from the coves up onto the ceiling along the length of the theater creating a nice atmosphere. Right now the lights are blue and red, but an interesting feature of these lights is their ability to be changed or to rotate on their own.

Listening System: Following 2 days of installation with a team of 6-9 people, the installation of the hearing loop is complete. The new system will now offer the hearing impaired a new option when they visit the theater. Creating a magnetic field in the theatre, individuals with hearing aids can tap into the signal emitted magnetically and hear the film’s audio directly through their earplugs. The copper wire that makes the technology possible was laid down on the floor and taped with double-sided tape. Then, a second wire was run through the theater on top of it (phase 2). On top of the 2 wires was laid a vinyl tape, which will protect any damage to the copper wire once the carpet is laid over it. Special attention was paid to the location of the seats in the theater to avoid the possibility of a bolt being drilled through the wire and therefore breaking the chain that is necessary to create the signal.

 

Digital Projection: In order for digital projection to be possible at the Dryden new port windows in the booth had to be cut. The glass has not yet been installed but the openings that were used by the Century Projectors in our booth for the past 60 years have been expanded to make room for the new Barco digital projector.

Screenings in the Curtis: If you haven’t been to any of the screenings in the Curtis Theatre these past few weeks I strongly urge you to attend. We’re on week 4 and so far they’ve all been very interesting. The programs, curated by students of the L. Jeffery Selznick School of Film Preservation, are run on a loop throughout the day. Films included in the programs are all 16mm prints of short films that are very rarely screened. This weekend’s program is titled “Hollywood Stars in Service: Government Sponsored World War II Films” and features short films by John Ford and John Huston along with stars James Stewart, Katherine Hepburn, Clark Gable, and Ronald Reagan. The programs change each week and are offered every Thursday and Saturday from 10:15 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 11:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. Screenings are included in museum admission.

New Seats: The new Dryden seats are set to arrive in the next week. We’re all very excited about their installation and the completion of the new theater. If you’ve recently installed our old Dryden seats in your home please send us pictures. We want to be able to share the ongoing life of the seats with everyone.

More on the Dryden Theatre Renovation:
Part I, The Curtain Stays
Part II, Seatless
Part III, Cement, Lighting, and Accessibility

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