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Film detailing Theatre’s campaign to premiere tonight

A line of theater-goers extends around the corner of Main Street on June 20, recreating a photo of the 1936 re-opening of the theater. The hundreds of extras were all filmed as part of a “Help Save Our Theatre” video that will be used to help raise much-needed funds for a digital projection system. Photos by James Wilson
James Wilson
Sports Editor

“This is a dire situation; it is urgent,” said Plumas Arts Director Roxanne Valladao on the Town Hall Theatre’s need for a digital projector.

Movie studios are transitioning from film to digital, and to keep up with the technological advances, the theater needs to purchase a digital projector to remain viable. The projector costs $70,000, prompting Plumas Arts to embark on its largest fund-raising effort to date.

One way the non-profit hopes to attract the attention of potential benefactors is through social media. To highlight the problem the Town Hall Theatre faces, with the goal of attracting donors, Diego Lozano spent the past couple of weeks making a short film.

Lozano called on the people of Quincy to show up to the theater June 20 and show the world how much the Town Hall Theater means to Plumas County. The turnout was more than Lozano hoped for. Droves of people showed up to be extras in his film.

The short film will premier tonight, July 2, at the Town Hall Theatre, coinciding with the arrival of High Sierra Music Festival attendees. A special Open Mic Night, sponsored by Bread for the Journey, High Sierra Music Festival and Sierra Nevada Brewery, will attract many from the HSMF community who might not know of the Quincy theater’s plight.

The Open Mic Night and “Help Save Our Theatre” video premiere will start at 8 p.m. Sign-ups for a seven-minute open mic set will be available at the door starting at 7:30 p.m. Admission for the Open Mic Night will be $5 at the door, though additional donations for the projector will be welcomed.

Bread for the Journey, which already donated $500, and a personal donor both offered to match any funds raised up to $1,000 tonight. The High Sierra Music Foundation also pledged a donation, though the amount is unknown. There will be multiple incentives and chances to donate toward the theater fund.

During the filming of the “Help Save Our Theatre” video, a concerned theater-goer who showed up to be an extra donated a check for $2,500 for the projector fund. Valladao stressed that any donation is appreciated and will only be used for the future purchase of the digital projection system.

Plumas Arts plans to extend the fundraising campaign until the goal of $70,000 is met. Those wishing to donate, or to see the “Help Save Our Theatre” video, can go to

Does anyone know if they are going to fix the theater as well? What I mean is the chairs are extremely uncomfortable and I can never see if someone sits in front of me. I haven't been in years because if this problem.
I don’t want to see our theater close. It saddens me. But more and more Main Street cinemas are closing across the country. I read that numerous nations outside of U.S. (like Europe & Latin America) have yet to convert to digital and 1 in 5 screens in the U.S. still use film. Interestingly, I heard that Kodak has signed purchase contracts with several major Hollywood studios and has plans to emerge from bankruptcy by continuing to make film available through 2017 (which may give the community more time to raise funds). However, I worry that if we completely let go of film and switch to a digital projection system, will it soon become obsolete thereby needing to be replaced in another few years with a new generation of technology, such as lasers? I also do not want to see film disappear. What will happen to all those wonderful cl***ic movies that are not available in the digital format? Will the Town Hall Theatre be able to retain the film projector for movies not available in the digital format and for any special events for the community (as I understand that converting to digital requires a special lens or screen)? Just something to think about as I wrap my mind around the idea of actually losing our theater.
We still have records, so I'm sure we'll have film for a long time, don't worry. And I'm sure most old movies have been transferred. Look at the turner movie cl***ics channel. Old movies all day. But technology is always changing and the one positive about that is it gets smaller. A lot smaller. Less waste. Film gets ruined that's a lot of waste. The building can stay historic and be used for other purposes if worst comes to worst, but I think it'll be a long ways away. I admit I went once to this theater and it was uncomfortable. I wait for Netflix or satellite pay per view. I can pause for breaks and its just nicer. Times change. Its a fact. I'm still alive even though some of my nostalgic places are gone. I have pictures & memories.



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