Norwood Theatre opens with performance, screenings

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September 7, 2012

Norwood Theatre opens with performance, screenings

This story appeared on Wicked Local. Read the article on their website.

Norwood Theatre is a piece of the past. While it has new, state of the art equipment, stepping into the theatre is like stepping back in time, said its owner Susan Lewis

The original building opened on Aug. 31, 1927, and 85 years later the new building welcomed its first guests on Aug. 31, 2012. The theatre had a big opening weekend, with a private gala, screenings of “Mary Poppins” and a performance by The Hal McIntyre Orchestra.

“People are very generous with their comments. They are excited to have the theatre back in the community,” Lewis said. “It warms my heart to hear someone call the theatre ‘our theatre’ because I truly feel Norwood with have a connection with the new Norwood Theatre.”

In 2010, Lewis purchased the building from the Fiddlehead Theatre Company for $925,000. Work started on the building shortly after. Construction was completed on Aug. 20, just 11 days before its grand opening.

“I was involved in working with the Norwood Theatre back when my children were performing in community theater. I felt a strong connection to the building,” Lewis said. “When I was given the information that the building was up for sale, I was happy to purchase the building and begin our journey to restore the theater.”

Lewis she is excited to see the “looks on people’s face when they walk into the lobby.”

“I’m excited about having my children visit the theatre and watching their faces as they remember special memories from the past,” she said.

Lewis said in the renovations made were to “bring back the beauty of the original theater.”

“The feeling that I hope people take away would be the feeling that they are walking into a theatre from the past,” Lewis said. “I think the theatre has a cozy feel to it. It will allow people to be entertained in a comfortable setting.”

During the construction phase, Lewis went through town and state archives and visited libraries to gather information and photos of the original building. Many elements of the theatre, including its new sign, are based on the 1927 original.

“It is a mix of the 20th century and brand new, ultra modern technical support equipment,” Norwood Theatre technical director Ed DiMarzio said. “It is a real mix of the old and new, and there is nothing like it.”

Marketing and Event Coordinator Erica McLaughlin the theater is unique to the area.

“I don’t think there is anywhere else that will provide the unique, varied entertainment we aim to provide,” she said.

Norwood Theatre has several events scheduled for the next few months. The Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra, a grand rock and rock spectacle featuring 10 vocalists who perform hits from the 1960s and 1970s, will perform on Saturday, Sept. 22, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $20 in advance and $25 at the door.

On Saturday, Oct. 6, Mister G will hold a CD release party for his new bilingual album, “Chocolalala.” The show begins at 2:30 p.m., and tickets cost $5 for children and $7 for adults.

The Regular Guys of Comedy, Jimmy Dunn, P. J. Thibodeau and Tony V., make their Norwood Theatre debut on Saturday, Oct. 13, where they will perform routines about their everyday lives and subjects such as drinking, football and awkward conversations with the doctor. Tickets for the 8 p.m. show cost $20.

People can purchase tickets by calling or visiting the Norwood Theatre Box Office. The box office is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. It is also open and hour and a half prior to performances. The box office phone number is 781-551-9000.

One event Lewis is looking forward to is the complimentary tour and screening of “The Red Balloon,” on Saturday, Sept. 15. The short film by Albert Lamorisse will be screened at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. during Norwood Day.

“‘The Red Balloon’ is the coolest,” Lewis said. “It just needs to be shown in a vintage theatre, because it is a very cool film.”

Additional information about the Norwood Theatre is available at its website, www.norwoodstage.com.

Staff writer Brad Cole can be reached at 781-433-8339 or bcole@wickedlocal.com. Like The Norwood Transcript and Bulletin on Facebook and follow @NorwoodTranscri on Twitter.