VENUES

Marivaux

(Brussels (Belgium))

Sint-Pietersstraat / Rue St Pierre (parallel Boulevard Adolphe Max)
1000 Brussels

Originally opened in 1924 as the Theatre Pathé-Marivaux, named after the French 17th Century playwriter, a contemporary of Molière. The theatre is located within a building on Boulevard Adolphe Max in the centre of Brussels. It has the auditorium located upstairs on the second floor. Seating was provided for 1,098 in stalls and balcony. From 1920 to 1921, the amount of cinemas jumps from 23 to 71 in the heart of Brussels ! In the 30s the territory expands to Madou (with "Le Grand Casino" that becomes Mirano later on) and in the North area.

From 1941 until 1943, it came under German control and was in use as a Soldatenkino, for the use of the occupying army. It was re-named Marivaux Theatre again from 1944. At this time the cinemas were back to their old glory as American films "marched" into Europe. Marivaux together with the Plaza (still exists in the Plaza hotel) and the Variété (abandoned next to the Plaza hotel, see below) were highlights in the same neighborhood. At the Brouckère square the Eldorado (still 1 room existing) and the Scala (now UGC) and at the Rue Neuve/Nieuwstraat the biggest one of all : Métropole (now Zara) and Victory (Rue Neuve 17, when cars could still drive through) could all together have over 10000 visitors. While at the beginning of cinema you could enter any time, whenever you felt like joining in, now timetables were fixed, premières were organized, reserved seating was set up etc In the 50s people went to the cinema for a perfect night out, discovering Hollywood movies and the world in general through documentaries and the news. Yet 1958 was a turning point when television appeared.

In the 60s and 70s alterations were done to the Marivaux and big rooms were split into several screens to increase the offer, raise the quality level as was more and more required and the cinema's profitability. Architecture became less and less important as the film on screen was the main attraction. While before the visitors were faithful to their cinema, now it could be consumed at many a place.

The Marivaux Cinema finally closed in 1992 due to depersonalization and competition of Kinepolis and home cinema. It was in use as a film studio when the Cinema Theatre Association visited the cinemas & theaters of Brussels in September 1995. There was talk at that time that the Marivaux may re-open for showing films in 1996, but this never happened. In 1998 the SA/NV New Vendome buys the cinema and gets in action by 2004 after long negotiation with officials. In 2008 the hotel Marivaux is opened with renovations of the former main entrance and now uses part of the old cinema rooms as conference rooms. The main hall had become a parking lot with little features left of it's incredible past. It is an honor to be able to party in such a place with such rich history. In respect of the main entrance on Boulevard Anspach we will enter at the backside situated in the Rue Saint-Pierre, Sint-Pieterstraat.

http://www.memoire60-70.be/CinemaCoupDeCoeur/Salles_Cinema_Bruxelles.htm
http://salledecinema.over-blog.com/pages/Lhistoire_des_salles_de_cinema_a_Bruxelles-1522185.html
http://bruxellesanecdotique.skynetblogs.be/archive/2009/10/09/nos-cinemas-d-antan.html
http://m.brusselnieuws.be/artikel/terug-naar-de-gouden-tijd-van-de-cinema
http://cinemake.skynetblogs.be/archive/2007/10/17/bd-adolphe-max-104-108-pathe-marivaux-1924-1992.html

Book:
http://www.cfc-editions.be/cfc/fr/11135-catalogue.html?BookId=20

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