Two places from last year that I paid quick return visits to this year for Doors Open are both close to home. The first is in Old Ottawa South. The Mayfair Theatre dates back to 1932, and operates as a repertory theatre showing second run, classic films, art house, and cult films. For some strange reason they persist in monthly showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and a more recent wretched film called The Room, starring, written, and directed by a guy named Tommy Wiseau, who looks a) like he was hit by an ugly stick thirty thousand times, b) he's stoned, or c) both.
This weekend Jaws is on the bill. Cue John Williams and that music.
The building is done in a Spanish Revival style, with false balconies and an inviting interior. Aside from movies, wedding services have been done here.
Up the street in the Glebe, I also visited the Avalon Studio, which I showed you as well last year. The old fly gallery of the Avalon Theatre was left alone for decades after the cinema shut down, the bulk of the building converted into retail space. The Avalon Studio opened up this space, now used as an intimate performance space with adjoining workshop rooms for actors. This is the second year the company has shown the space as part of Doors Open.
I like the old brickwork of the preserved gallery, and it's a terrific space, something very different for Doors Open.
Outside, the bare bones of the old Avalon Theatre can still be seen when you know it was there; the hardware store takes up the bulk of the old building, but other retail and cafes also thrive here. The portion housing the Avalon Studio can easily be seen rising at the right.