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Capri Theatre’s history


The Capri Theatre was opened in 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/modern. 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 1,472.

The Capri Theatre opened its doors for its first night of trade in October 1941, to a double feature from MGM of ‘Florian’ which starred Robert Young and Helen Gilbert, as well as ‘Dr. Kildare Goes Home’, starring Lew Ayres & Lionel Barrymore.

Greater Union acquired the Theatre in 1947. In 1964, the Theatre was re-branded the ‘New Cinema Curzon’
In 1967 Greater Union undertook some capital works on the Theatre, and reduced the seating capacity to 851.

1978 was the year the Theatre Organ Society of Australia (SA Division) purchased the Theatre and in December re-named it ‘Capri Theatre’. The inaugural Capri ‘Wurlitzer’ concert was held on 2nd April 1983.

In 1986, Crocodile Dundee played at the Capri Theatre and was hugely successful, playing for almost one full calendar year and helping TOSA (SA Division) 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 Theatre was added to the South Australia register of state heritage items in 1990.

In 2012, the Capri Theatre 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 Theatre, in its need to upgrade its film equipment, as the industry rapidly evolves.