History of the Capri
The Capri was opened on the 8th of October 1941 as the New Goodwood Star Theatre. It was built by RJ Nurse and designed by architect Mr Chris Smith (Architect). The Theatre's architectural style is art deco/moderne. This style is highlighted by the curvaceous lines, circles and semi-circles, a feature of The Capri and of the 1940's architectural era. The Capri originally had a seating capacity of 1472.
On the first night a double feature from MGM was screen, featuring Florian which starred Robert Young and Helen Gilbert, as well as Dr. Kildare Goes Home, starring Lew Ayres and Lionel Barrymore.
Greater Union acquired the Theatre in 1947. In 1964 the Theatre was re-branded the New Cinema Curzon. In 1967 Greater Union removed most of the internal art deco features and rebranded as The Capri Cinema with the aim of showing foreign movies, reducing the seating capacity to 851.
1978 was the year the Theatre Organ Society of Australia (SA Division) Incorporated purchased the Theatre and in December re-named it Capri Theatre. They installed a unique WurliTzer organ thats inaugural concert was held on 2nd April 1983.
In 1986, Crocodile Dundee played at The Capri and was hugely successful, playing for just over one full calendar year, helping TOSA complete their loan and thus own the Theatre outright. There is a framed Crocodile Dundee movie poster on display at the Theatre, recognising the films important historical significance.
The Capri was added to the South Australia register of state heritage items in 1990.
In 2012, The Capri upgraded its film technology by purchasing a brand new digital film projector. The projector was purchased with assistance from the South Australian Government by way of a grant, as well a significant interest free loan from the Unley Council, as all levels of governance recognised the importance of supporting The Capri, in its need to upgrade its film equipment, as the industry rapidly evolves.
Check out some photos from past and present below.