"Enter the dream-house, brothers and sisters......."
The foyer of the Odeon Kingstanding was, for a generation, a portal to the best and worst dreams filmland had to offer. It lay only a few miles up the road from the hub of the Odeon circuit - Oscar Deutsch’s Odeon Theatres of Bennetts Hill and his house architects, the Colmore Row-based practice of Harry Weedon. For the Odeon story is, at point of entry, a Birmingham story. It’s also a story rooted in this website’s catchment area – Handsworth and Perry Barr as well as Kingstanding. Given the prejudice aroused whenever the terms Birmingham and architecture coincide, it’s a story, perhaps, not told often enough. In an age of multiplexes, cinema architecture too enjoys a bad press: as a means of consumption, fast film, like fast food, lowers expectations while satisfying the basic need. It was not ever thus. Once upon a time, cinemas dared to dream…
Local Studies & History Department (Creator)
The Weedon Partnership
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