Capitol Theatre, Perth

Capitol Theatre, was a George Temple-Poole designed theatre and cinema,[2] located at 10 William Street Perth.

Capitol Theatre
Capitol Theatre, c.1930
Address10 William Street
OwnerTemple Court Buildings Limited
Capacity2,250 seats
Opened4 May 1929
ArchitectGeorge Temple-Poole
C. Mouritzen
BuilderE. Allwood[1]

The theatre was officially opened on 4 May 1929[3] by the Mayor of Perth, James T. Franklin. The opening night included a screening of Gene Stratton-Porter's Freckles and performances by the Capitol Theatre orchestra, Leah Miller's Beauty Ballet and a vaudeville act by Syd Roy's Lyricals.[4] The theatre featured a 40 ft by 20 ft illuminated sign above its roof on the William Street facade,[5][6] art nouveau stencil work in the lounge foyer and the upper crush area, a bust of the late Rudolph Valentino in the foyer and a 16 ft by 12 ft chandelier, containing 300 lights.[7] Reportedly the lips on Valentino's bust were constantly red with the adoring kisses of his Perth fans. The bust is currently part of the WA Performing Arts Museum collection at His Majesty's Theatre.

In the 1930s it was a popular cinema destination.[8]

In the 1940s and 1950s the theatre was regularly used for formal functions relating to the state of Western Australia, and the city.[9][10]

Entrepreneur and later Lord Mayor, Thomas Wardle bought the theatre in 1966, as a theatre and Bob Dylan performed in it on his first visit to Perth in that year.[11] Wardle sold it in 1968 and it was demolished soon after to make way for an office building.[12] The chandelier from the theatre now hangs in Melbourne's Princess Theatre.

Similar to the nearby Esplanade Hotel and Barracks Arch, the Capitol Theatre was demolished prior to the city or state of Western Australia having any effective heritage legislation—demolition of significant historical structures was carried out with little regard to the city's heritage.


  1. "Building the Capitol". The Daily News. Perth: National Library of Australia. 3 May 1929. p. 14. Retrieved 22 June 2012.
  2. "Modern Design". The Daily News. Perth: National Library of Australia. 3 May 1929. p. 15. Retrieved 22 June 2012.
  3. "Capitol Theatre". Perth Gazette. Perth: National Library of Australia. 10 April 1929. p. 13. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  4. "Entertainers for Perth". Perth Gazette. Perth: National Library of Australia. 4 May 1929. p. 6. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  5. "Capitol Theatre". The Sunday Times. Perth: National Library of Australia. 15 January 1928. p. 8. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  6. "Perth by Night". Perth Gazette. Perth: National Library of Australia. 24 August 1929. p. 7. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  7. "Capitol Theatre". The Sunday Times. Perth: National Library of Australia. 7 April 1929. p. 9 Section: First Section. Retrieved 29 November 2013.
  8. "Capitol Theatre Perth". The Daily News. Perth: National Library of Australia. 12 July 1932. p. 3. Retrieved 18 June 2012.
  9. Remembrance Day dedication service November 11, 1940 at the Capitol Theatre, Perth, 1940, retrieved 18 June 2012
  10. Australian Broadcasting Commission (1953), State celebrate the Coronation of...Queen Elizabeth II by W.A. Symphony Orchestra... Capitol Theatre, Perth, 6th June 1953 : Programme and invitation card, Government Print, retrieved 18 June 2012
  11. Kimball, Duncan. "Bob Dylan with The Band". Performance: Australian Tours by Overseas Artists 1964-75. Milesago. Archived from the original on 7 March 2007. Retrieved 12 November 2013.
  12. Capitol Theatre, William Street, Perth, WA at

Illustrations Ltd (1930). Capitol Theatre, Perth. Retrieved 29 November 2013.

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