The Mountain Times

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Ludlow auditorium unveils a new, gigantic movie screen

LUDLOW - Following a long study and fundraising effort, FOLA (Friends of Ludlow Auditorium) installed a new movie screen in the Ludlow Town Hall Auditorium recently. The screen is about twice the size of the previous screen and operates electronically so that, when not in use, it retracts into an out of sight container above the proscenium arch of the auditorium's stage.

"I felt that I was actually part of the movie, the screen is so large and the projections so vivid," said David Almond, one of the FOLA members who helped with the installation, after he witnessed the first images projected on the new screen.

The most difficult part of bringing the screen, which when crated weighed 900 pounds and was 24 feet long, was getting it into the back stage area of the auditorium so that it could be lifted to the proper height. Through the cooperation of Ludlow Electric Department, plus the manpower of countless volunteers, the crated screen was raised to the second floor window level of the stage by the Electric Department's crane and very carefully positioned just in front of the stage curtain on special mechanical risers supplied by North American Theatrix. It then began the slow rise behind the upper proscenium arch of the stage to be secured permanently in its "box".

Jim Alic and Kevin Kuntz complimented all the people who helped carry the screen to the risers.  "That was one very heavy package to secure," noted Alic.

The new screen's first use was the showing of the world-acclaimed film musical, "Les Miserables." This also marked the debut of three new projectionists, David Almond, Bill Kneebone, and Andy Ohotnicky. They were excellent in displaying the film in wide-screen format.

FOLA plans to be using the new screen for all future movies. This will include the Oct 26, 2 p.m. special for kids on Halloween, "Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein", as well as the Nov. 2 showing of "Beasts of the Soutrhern Wild" and the Dec. 7 movie, "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy."  Black River Area Community Coalition also plans on using the new screen for its Nov. 8 presentation of "The Hungry Heart."

4- Ludlow Auditoriaum Screen Zinside 20 David And Ralph In Front Of Screen

Photos submitted
After hours of work, the crew finally attached the screen over the proscenium. Ralph Pace and David Almond stand in awe of the magnitude of the giant screen.