Thursday, October 29, 2009


There's a landmark theatre up Granville Street at 12th called the Stanley. I occasionally saw films there in the distant past but it was turned into a live-theatre venue in subsequent years. I seem to vaguely recall times of waiting for a late night bus in the rain after emerging from seeing a movie. At that time, there were no handy Starbucks or bistros staying open for late-night sipping.

I also remember my daughter and my mother going to see a Star Trek movie there and a dear knitted kitty getting left behind. A phone call the next day to the Stanley let us know that the toy was alive and well and hanging out in the box office, waiting to be beamed up home.

Wikipedia says that "the Stanley first opened as a movie theatre in December 1930, and showed movies for over sixty years before falling revenues led to its closure in 1991. After years of threatened commercial redevelopment, the Stanley was renovated as a stage theatre in 1997–1998 and subsequently awarded status as a heritage building."

It's gratifying to see a little local colour being preserved. I hope no one minds my tinkering with the photographs to add a little local colour of my own (do make them bigger for a closer look).


  1. I remember seeing Charlie Chaplin in "The Great Dictator" at the Stanley Theatre.

  2. Are you that old?! (haha)

    I think I saw "Alice's Restaurant" there. People lined up around the block for it.

  3. I think mid-sized towns everywhere are really making an effort to preserve the classic architecture of the past now. For a while--with the advent of malls--old main streets were left to fall into disrepair. I think we all have a Stanley somewhere, thankfully doing something creative. hugs xxox

  4. Hmm...Vancouver has gone totally big city and its history is fairly new so any effort to preserve some of its heritage is really least by some. The town I live near in New Brunswick seems hell-bent for leather to tear down all vestiges of any architectural interest that remains, including wonderful old Victorian style houses, being either torn down or covered with bland vinyl siding. All in the name of progress. (I'll climb down off my soap box now!)
    Hugs, xo

  5. There was a building known as the Stanley Theatre in Pittsburgh, before it changed names, but as the Stanley it hosted acts like the Grateful Dead and Bob Marley... no slouch of a Stanley that place...

  6. Sounds like a wonderful place. What's in a name, I wonder.

    "Make a new plan, Stan."