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 Series: The Curtain Stays

Posted by on Dec 21 2012 | Motion Pictures

Kolbe inspects the curtain

In this series, Theatre Manager, Kolbe Resnick will keep us up to date on the renovation each week with everything related to the Dryden Theatre makeover from the seats to the projection booth.

If there is one question I have been asked more than any other in the past few months it is “Will the curtain stay after the theater is reopened?”. The answer to that question is a resounding “Yes.” Our unique gold curtain will absolutely be there on March 2nd. Nothing could ever possibly replace the excitement evoked from the raising of the curtain and the slow fade out of the music. It is a truly unique experience. An experience you only get at the Dryden. Taking the curtain down, storing it, and reinstalling it is no small task, however. Curtain specialists at Reynold’s Drapery in Newport will be coming in the morning of January 2 to safely remove it from the theater and bring it to an off-site storage location before the major part of the restoration begins.

Another question I’ve been asked repeatedly is: “Two months? That seems like a long time!” Actually, two months is the perfect amount of time. January will be the month for the cosmetic renovations, which includes the new seats, carpeting, paint, and lighting. February will be when the renovations of the projection booth take place, including our exciting new addition: the digital projector. As we want everything to be perfect for our reopening, we aren’t willing to take
any chances on time.

If you’ve come to the Dryden in the past week you may or may not have noticed the first steps of the renovation process. During the day electricians have been hard at work in the theater preparing for the full on restoration. Beginning with familiarizing themselves with the theater they’ve been locating circuits, rerouting cables that run through the theater, and preparing the aisle lighting that will run along the edge of the seats. You may have noticed the slow clearing
out of the box office. By January 1st, the box office will be empty. And when you come on January 1st for our final screening (Cinema Paradiso) in the old Dryden you will notice that the lobby furniture and the piano will be gone. Following that screening everything will be plasticated in the booth, in the offices, and in the closets surrounding the theater. The following morning the seats will be taken out and loaded into a truck to be distributed to those of you who reserved them.

The historic Heywood-Wakefield seats we are removing sold out in a matter of days, but you can still get on the waiting list here.  City Newspaper ran an excellent story about the theater in last week and today we had two news crews in here.

There is roughly one more week of screenings in the old Dryden! The last chance to see the theater the way it is there are a wide variety of films playing that appeal to everyone.

Come celebrate the moving image!

More on the Dryden Theatre Renovation:
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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