Annexinema At the Cinema
Friday 10th December 2010
Byron Cinema & Bingo, Hucknall, Nottinghamshire

Annexinema was commissioned by Sideshow to research and make a film responding to the history of cinemas and cinema-going in Nottingham and beyond. This was presented at Hucknall's Byron Bingo, a former cinema whose auditorium remains intact, yet unused, above a bingo hall.

Guest were taken by coach from Nottingham to Hucknall, during which Dr Lucy Faire, a social historian from the University of Leicester, gave a talk on our local cinemas as we passed some of the key sites of their history.

Part 1
Jack Helyer
At the Pipe Organ

A recording of Helyer playing the Conacher organ at the Odeon Cinema, Nottingham, circa 1962.

At the Cinema 1

UK, 2010, video, 5mins, black & white, sound
The intertwining histories of early cinema and trains.

Ken Jacobs
Opening The Nineteenth Century: 1896

USA, 1990, 16mm, 9mins, colour, sound, 3-D utilizing Pulfrich Effect
“1890s Lumiere/1990 Ken Jacobs. Shafting the screen: the projector beam maintains its angle as it meets the screen and keeps on going, introducing volume as well as light, just as the Paris, Cairo and Venice of a century ago happen to pass.”

Stephen Connolly with Patrick Keiller
Nottingham Panorama

UK, 2007, HD video, 7mins, colour, silent
The film consists of a montage of the current city and the early twentieth century tram ride from Nottingham Train Station to the former Victoria Train Station, now the site of the Victoria Centre. Incorporating ‘Tram Rides Through Nottingham’ (Mitchell & Kenyon, 1902) courtesy of the BFI.

Frank Abbott
Moving Histories

UK, 2010, Video, 5mins, colour, sound
Like the arrival of a comet, the opening of the Grand Theatre cinema in Hyson Green in 1896 created a shift in our understanding of the world, before people from around the world had arrived. Frank’s film introduces the site of the Grand, and shows the results of a recent workshop to create new moving images for the space.

Emily Richardson
The Futurist

UK, 2010, HD video, 4mins, colour, sound
The Futurist is a condensed experience of film viewing, a single 360 degree animated shot in an empty 1920s cinema where the sound becomes a cacophony of past projections and the aural experience is closer to that of the projectionist than the audience.

Jim Steptoe
The Projectionist

UK, circa 1960, 16mm transferred to video, 6mins, black & white, silent
An amateur film from the Media Archive of Central England, showing a day in the life of a cinema projectionist at the Victory Cinema in Stapleford, Nottinghamshire.

At the Cinema 2

UK, 2010, slides/sound recordings, 6mins, colour, sound
Memories of local cinemas and their current incarnations.

Bill Freeman
Cinema of the 70s

UK, 1965, 8mm transferred to video, 12mins, colour, sound
A local film shot in 1965 showing an optimistic hope for the future of cinemas in Nottingham. With hindsight, many of the cinemas featured have now closed, and this films stands as a testament to the pre-multiplex era.

At the Cinema 3

UK, 2010, video/sound recordings, 6mins, colour, sound
Recollections of the Elite cinema on Parliament Street (now Gatecrasher nightclub) and a particular screening of Earthquake. Events change with each person’s recollection.

Part 2
Dallas Simpson

UK, 2010, 15mins, binaural sound
A binaural sound art performance was made in the Byron cinema in the afternoon during a weekday in October 2010. The 40 minute performance has been edited and layered to create a shorter sound piece that uses aural elements of the building to evoke the history of cinema past.

At the Cinema 4

UK, 2010, still photos/sound recordings, 2mins, colour, sound
The once popular Odeon is still strong in people’s memories, whilst the building slowly crumbles into disrepair.

Bill Morrison
The Death Train

USA, 1993, 16mm, 17mins, black & white, sound
The Death Train was originally conceived of as part of John Moran’s opera Everyday Newt Burman. The minimal dialogue was taken from the piece in which the Doctor and Mrs. Frumpington share a compartment on a train, which is transporting their souls to the Hereafter.
‘A history of cinema is played out during the film’s lifetime. Early train footage and zoetrope animation are combined with mid-century newsreel and educational films, finally concluding in a long, modern, aerial shot. Each frame is a compartment in the train of film, pausing briefly before our eyes to be observed, thereby living its life in this screening, while being carried to the Hereafter.

ATV Today
Refining Silver From Television and Cinema Film

UK, 1967, TV news, 5mins, black & white, silent
At an unidentified industrial location we see large amounts of scrap film being collected and shovelled into a furnace. The resulting ashes are then processed for their silver content which is shown in both molten and bullion forms. The facility appears to be destroying a lot of 35mm film as well as television material (BBC and Rediffusion tins are visible).

Wayne Burrows

UK, 2010, performance, 6mins, colour, sound
A fictional slideshow of still and moving images with live narration attempts to reconstruct the events of August 17 1973, when a former Naval radio engineer claimed to have photographed unexplained atmospheric phenomena in and around Nottingham.

At the Cinema 5

UK, 2010, video, 5mins, colour, sound
A close study of The Byron as it now stands in waiting for its next incarnation.