Meanwhile in Rosebery by Paul Brennan

While it is wonderful to see THE THEATRE ROYAL open and new consideration to THE METRO MINERVA and THE PARRAMATTA ROXY as perfroming arts and creative spaces, favouring emerging talent and Sydney’s cultural future, spare a thought and a few tears for the impending demise on the city fringe of the 1300 seat vaudeville movie theatre THE MARINA THEATRE on Gardners Road Rosebery. It screened movies and hosted hundreds of live shows from 1927-1984. Then used for storage and video shop shelving. Bayside council allowed it to be sold for “redevelopment” (vandalism for profit). It has a balcony, dressing rooms, a large stage and is of concert hall proportions. Instead of rescue revitalisation and reopening as an arts complex of endless stage and screen use, as it was built and survives, it will be a idiotic overstuffed rabbit box of little flats, in a suburb already crammed with flats, on a street in urgent need of proper use. An appalling mususe of a colossal useful building not yet 100 years old and built to last 400 years. 

So, sadly, here is the 1927 Marina Theatre a fortress sized building, still intact, which in 2022 is about to be turned into 47 tiny flats. This is symptomatic of the thoughtless desecration of Sydney’s useful theatres. Hence the urgency to save The Roxy and Minerva. 

This is at 409 Gardners Road Rosebery/Mascot. Instead of a vibrant street of restaurants and this cinema/arts/performance centrepiece, it will be lost to a scruffy lot of closed up shops, roller doors and a supermarket with flats. Very depressing for our younger generations. 

Below is the theatre pictured in its glory days 

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