Montreal to get digital makeover

Montreal Theatre has been awarded a $10,000 Community Strengthening Grant for a digital makeover.

Tumut’s iconic Montreal Theatre is known for its 1930s charm, but part of it needs to be brought into the 2020s, and it will be thanks to a grant from Snowy Valleys Council.

The Theatre has been awarded a $10,000 Community Strengthening Grant for a digital makeover.

“We are basically redesigning our website, linking it with our Facebook page, and giving it a more modern look,” theatre technical officer and co-author of the grant application Brian Killelea said.

He admits the theatre’s current website is “generic and very old-fashioned.”

The theatre volunteers had been thinking about updating the website for a long time and when the grants became available it was the perfect opportunity.

“We want to put more content on it, and do online booking,” Mr Killelea said.

“We are pretty much bringing it into the 21st century, to try and stay appealing to the general public and get more information out there.”

Despite the modern slant, the plan is to add some of the theatre’s old world charm to the website.

“We want to incorporate some sort of art deco into it,” Mr Killelea said.

He wasn’t sure whether or not the grant application would be successful.

“Yes and no; you’ve got to be in it to win it so to speak,” he said.

Either way, the theatre got the full amount applied for.

What is happening at the theatre is what is happening in much of Australia at the moment.

“Absolutely nothing,” Mr Killelea said. 

“We shut our doors as soon as the lockdown was announced.”

The theatre has a four-person Covid committee and they will develop a new Covid plan for when the theatre reopens.

As well as being a movie theatre for locals to go to, the theatre, with its unique style, appeals to tourists, and this is something Mr Killelea and the other volunteers are looking forward to when it gets going again.

“We get six busloads of tourists visiting a year,” he said.

“Sometimes, someone can be doing some work on it and they hear a knock on the door, and it’s someone wanting to come in and have a look.”

Nineteen applications were received by Snowy Valleys Council with $127,758 of funds requested through the Community Strengthening Grants and twelve projects were approved for funding to the value of $78,968.

Mr Killelea said that due to the approval process it would be a couple of months before the work started, and that the work on the website would be sourced locally.