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Kinemacolor (Colonial) Theatre - / Karn-Morris
Vancouver, B.C. Canada
603 Granville St.
Organ installation timeframe: 1913 -
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Ad for Opening Night at the Kinemacolor Theatre appearing in the Vancouver Daily World February 15, 1913.
The Kinemacolor Theatre opened February 24, 1913.
The theatre was named for the Kinemacolor projection technology. Originally developed in England, Kinemacolor was innovative in its use of red and green spinning discs to produce a full color image. A similar system was installed at Victoria's Kinemacolor Theatre. Unfortunately the technology was not entirely successful and it was removed within a few years.
The theatre later reopened as the Colonial Theatre in 1915.
The OHS Pipe Organ Database lists a Karn-Morris organ being installed in the Kinemacolor Theatre in 1913 and the changingvancouver Vancouver history website does make reference to a "$10,000 pipe organ" being installed in the 1913-1914 timeframe.
D. Stuart Kennedy, in his article about Warren & Son organs published in The Console magazine May 1984 (Vol 23 No 5, pg 8) describes the Colonial Kimball instrument as "one of the first theatre instruments produced by this builder." According to Kennedy, it had originally been erected in the Colonial Theatre and was a tubular straight job. He tried it after it has been moved to a Vancouver church and found it to be "a very pleasant sounding organ." Kennedy recalls, "built about 1913, and very much like the Kimball organs of that period."
No further information about this instrument is available.

Colonial Theatre c.1920. Image courtesy Vancouver Public Library, public domain.
Trade journals from the 1920's list various organists performing at the Colonial. For example, this news item from Canadian Moving Picture Digest, Vol 13, No 16, Jan 15, 1922, p.553
Paul Michelin is listed as being an organist at the Colonial, 1921 timeframe

c.1925. Image courtesy City of Vancouver Archives, public domain.

Colonial Theatre c.1929. Image courtesy Vancouver Public Library, public domain.

c.1957. Image courtesy City of Vancouver Archives

Colonial Theatre, early 1960s

c.1967. Image courtesy City of Vancouver Archives, public domain.


1972. Image courtesy City of Vancouver Archives, public domain.
The Colonial Theatre building was demolished in 1972.

Entrance stained glass
According to the website Changing Vancouver, the original stained glass entrance signage was 7 feet high and 13 feet wide. The piece disappeared when the building was torn down in 1972 only to reappear in a local Keg restaurant some time later.

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