Thursday, August 10, 2017

"A cinema to be treasured in Mon State"

From FRONTIER MYANMAR July, 12th 2017

Myanmar's architectural treasures include an ornate teak cinema in Mudon that was built nearly 100 years ago and is probably unique in Southeast Asia.

Words and Photos by PHILIP JABLON

Myanmar’s reputation at Southeast Asia’s jewel box of heritage architecture is well established. From colonial-era masterpieces and rare examples of Tropical Art Deco, to vernacular architecture of every age, Myanmar likely contains the best-preserved collection of vintage buildings in all of mainland Southeast Asia.

Almost as well established is the precariousness of that status. Due to lax zoning regulations and weak enforcement of cultural heritage laws, many of Myanmar’s historic buildings stand in existential limbo, with market forces holding ultimate sway over their fate....

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The Aung Nan Mingala Cinema

A very simple ticket window. The smaller hole on the left was for the purchase of balcony level tickets.

The name of The Aung Nan Mingala Cinema on the gabled facade.

Auditorium views. The bare circles on either side of the screen once held paintings that were commissioned specially for the cinema.

The cartouche atop the proscenium, welcoming one and all to a world of escape.

Details of a balustrade surrounding the veranda.


Help support movie theater preservation

Feeling generous today? Want to contribute to the documentation of historic movie theaters in Southeast Asia? If so, please consider making a donation to The Southeast Asia Movie Theater Project. All donations between now and the end of the year will be used to survey more theaters in Myanmar, where enchanting gems like the one featured above are steadily being lost.

Every little bit helps me keep the project going.

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