Melbourne’s iconic Capitol Theatre is set to undergo a much-needed transformation to return it to its former glory, thanks to support from the Andrews Labor Government.
Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney joined RMIT Vice-Chancellor Martin Bean and Academy Award winner Adam Elliot to announce the project, which will transform the Capitol back to a community and education hub.
The Labor Government has contributed $2.5 million from the TAFE Rescue Fund towards the project with the remaining funding to come from RMIT and a community fundraising effort spearheaded by the university.
The project will include the redevelopment of the fly tower behind the stage and expanding the use of the theatre beyond film screenings to include theatrical and musical productions.
Once completed it is expected up to 1000 RMIT students will use the theatre weekly for lectures, tutorials and creating and showing their own digital works.
Use of the cinema for educational and public activities will provide opportunities for RMIT’s higher education and vocational students to develop the skills they need to get the jobs they want in a real-world setting.
Constructed in 1924, the Capitol Theatre is the largest civic work executed by internationally renowned American architects Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahoney Griffin.
RMIT bought the Capitol Theatre in 1999, and used it for lectures and cultural events such as the comedy and film festivals until 2014.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney
“Not only will the community benefit from this refurbishment, but RMIT students will also have access to high quality training in a unique environment – making sure they get the skills they need for the jobs they want.”
“So many Victorians have fond memories of the Capitol Theatre which is why it’s so important that we help look after this iconic Melbourne institution.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley
“The internationally renowned Capitol Theatre will soon house even more of our state’s creative projects – not just a win for the RMIT community, but for our entire Creative State.”
Quotes attributable to RMIT Vice Chancellor Martin Bean
“Once again, Melbourne’s eager creative minds will be able to come together and teach, learn and create, all in a truly majestic space.”
“It’s a privilege to be leading the charge towards returning this theatre not only to our students, but the entire Melbourne community.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020