The Civic Auckland

The Civic is heritage atmospheric theatre in downtown Auckland.

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Yesterday morning I went on a tour of the The Civic. The tour is scheduled to run for approximately 45 minutes but I was there for almost two and a half hours.

The Civic opened on 20 December 1929. It was a purpose built cinema devised by Thomas O’Brien. It was designed with Indian, Javanese, ancient Persian and Moorish themes. It featured grand staircases, original artwork, exotic figures of animals, including two life-size Abyssinian panther statues. As an atmospheric theatre it had a night sky with twinkling stars.

Construction begun in April 1929 and was completed in 33 weeks. As there were not the health and safety regulations of today it was a dangerous worksite, and at least 8 men have believed to have died during the construction that employed some 2,000 workers.

While it opened to initial interest, audience numbers quickly dropped due to the Depression and O’Brien screening British films rather than the popular Hollywood films, which were screening across the road.

O’Brien departed for Australia in 1932 and a series of mangers were appointed to act on behalf of the original investors.

During the Second World War it was a popular venue for United States soldiers in town.

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By the 1980s, The Civic was rundown and was facing demolition. A group called Friends of the Civic formed and fought for its continuation.

A two year project saw many of the theatre’s original features being restored or recreated. The project also included addition of modern elements, such as a stage with seven-storey fly tower, Green Room, dressing rooms, modern sound and lighting.

The Civic reopened in 1999 on its 70th anniversary of its opening night. Today it is a performing arts venue and cinema, hosting events such as large-scale touring musicals and an international film festival.

The twinkling night sky is a recreation of how the sky was on December 20, 1929.

The Civic is located on the corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street.

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Stage

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Dressing rooms

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Stage

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Stage – wings

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Ceiling lighting rig

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Flamingo curtain

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Under the stage

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Under the stage

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Wintergarden

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Some of the shows I’ve seen at The Civic

Bright Nights Auckland

Bright Nights is a waterfront lighting festival at Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour.

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This free festival opened last night and runs from 6pm till late until Sunday 13th May.

The trail begins at the KZ1 boat outside the Maritime Museum and ending at Waitematā Plaza.

As well as various light installations there is a silent disco, ‘glow-in-the-dark’ gelato, and roving street performers.

The event is curated by Angus Muir Design

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St. Paul’s Cathedral, Kolkata

St. Paul’s Cathedral is the Church of North India of Anglican faith in Kolkata.

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The cathedral was built to replace St. John’s Church, which was becoming too small for Kolkata’s growing congregation. The foundation stone was laid by Bishop Daniel Wilson in 1839. The church was completed and consecrated in 1847.

The church was refurbished following an earthquake in 1887. An earthquake in 1934 destroyed the original spire. The tower was rebuilt in the style of the central Bell Harry tower of Canterbury Cathedral in Kent, England.

St. Paul’s is located at 1A, Cathedral Road, Kolkata.

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Rabindra Sarobar Lake

Rabindra Sarobar Lake is a man-made lake in south Kolkata, India.

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The Calcutta Improvement Trust acquired 192 acres of marshy jungle to develop for residential use. The lake, which covers approximately 72 acres of the park space, was originally named Dhakuria Lake. In 1958, it was renamed after the writer and Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore. There is a statue of Tagore at southern entrance to the park.

Some of the trees and shrubs surrounding the lake are over 100 years old.

There has been issues in recent years with pollutions levels in the lake but it is still a nice walk.

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Mother House Kolkata

Missionaries of Charity Mother House in Kolkata, India is home to the religious congregation of the Missionaries of Charity. It is where Mother Teresa lived and worked, and is her final resting place.

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Mother Teresa was buried on the ground floor of the Mother House on 13th September, 1997.

Photography is only permitted at Mother Teresa’s Tomb and by her statue. There is a small museum with information about Mother Teresa’s life and work. Many of Mother Teresa’s possessions are on display, such as her crucifix, dinner bowl, rosary, sandals, and sari.

Upstairs you can see the simple room in which she slept and worked from 1953 until her passing in 1997.

Mother House is open every day except Thursdays from 8am to 12 noon and 3pm to 6pm. It is closed on 22 August, Easter Monday and 26 December.

The Mother House of the Missionaries of Charity is located at 54A, A.J.C. Bose Road, Calcutta.

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Whistler Blackcomb

Whistler Blackcomb is a ski resort in British Columbia.

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Whistler and Blackcomb were originally two separate ski mountain resorts. Whistler was conceived as part of a bid to host the 1968 Winter Olympics. Although the 1968 Winter Olympics went to Grenoble, France the plans went ahead anyway and the resort opened in 1966.

Blackcomb opened for business in 1980. Intrawest Resort Holdings, which developed Blackcomb purchased Whistler in 1997, and the two ski resorts merged in 2003. Together at 33 km (8,171 acres) Whistler and Blackcomb form the largest ski area in North America.

In 2008 the Peak 2 Peak Gondola opened. This tri-cable gondola connects Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains. It is a 11 minute, 4.4 kilometre (2.7 mile) journey.

Whistler was the centrepiece for the 2010 Winter Olympics hosted by Vancouver.

The ski resort is located approximately 121 kilometres (75 miles) north of Vancouver.

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Shannon Falls

Shannon Falls is the third largest waterfall in British Columbia, Canada.

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Shannon Falls is located in the Shannon Falls Provincial Park, and is named after early settler William Shannon.

The waterfall has a height of 335 metres (1,099 feet).

There is a kiosk located at the trail entrance, which has snacks, souvenirs, and park information. There are also a flush toilet block.

The Shannon Falls Provincial Park is located 58 kilometres (36 miles) north from Vancouver and 2 kilometres (1.2 miles) south of Squamish on the Sea to Sky Highway.

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