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King's Theatre / Anita's Theatre

Venue Summary
Name King's Theatre / Anita's Theatre
Address Cnr King Street and Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Thirroul, New South Wales 2515
Operation Dates 1925-10-22 - 9999-12-31
Capacity 900
Suburban/Country Country
Purpose Cinema
Screens 1
1925-10-22 - 1966-07-01 : Owned : Wollongong Theatres Pty. Ltd.
2003-01-01 - 2010-01-01 : Owned :
Venue Comments

CinemaScope installed 1955.

The elaborate King’s Theatre, built for Wollongong Theatres in 1925, operated continually until April 1965 when a progressive downturn in patronage which had begun in the early 1960s forced its closure. In December of the same year the cinema briefly reopened however as ticket takings failed to improve in July 1966 the cinema closed permanently (Parkinson 1995, 54-55).

In 1968 the building was adapted for roller-skating and continued to function in this capacity until the mid-1990s (Roe 2011).

In 2003, Illawarra businessman John Comelli purchased the vacant and deteriorating building. After extensive and costly renovations King’s reopened in 2007 renamed “Anita’s Theatre” after Comelli’s late wife. Since that date the theatre has played host to a concerts ande live performances, however, is presently on the market, its future uncertain (Arnold 2010).

The theatre was designed by the architect’s and is notable for being one of only a few extant cinemas designed by renowned architects Kaberry and Chard (Thorne 1996).


Arnold, Alex 2010, ‘Anita’s Theatre goes on the market’, Illawarra Mercury, Saturday 3 April, accessed 30/4/2011

Roe, Ken 2011, 'Anita’s Theatre’, Cinema Treasures access 30/4/11

Parkinson, R 1995, Gauffered Velour: a history of motion picture exhibition and picture theatres in the Illawarra district of New South Wales, 1897-1994, Australian Theatre Historical Society, Campbelltown, NSW.

Thorne, R, Tod, L & Cork, K 1996, Movie Theatre Heritage Register for New South Wales 1896 – 1996, Department of Architecture, University of Sydney, Sydney.

Venue Events
Event Date Name of Venue Address Latitude /
Capacity Suburban Purpose Screens
1925-10-22 King's Theatre Cnr King Street and Lawrence Hargrave Drive
New South Wales 2515
1500 Country Cinema 1
2007-01-01 Anita's Theatre