Doors Open: Its a unique concept wherein visitors can access historical and architectural buildings for free for a specified time.
Doors Open Toronto: This event offers free and rare access to more than 130 architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings across the city. This event is organized by Ontario Heritage Trust each year. Typically this event commences and ends in the month of May (summer months).
Elgin & Winter Theatre
I chose the Elgin & Winter Theatre for my first Doors Open Toronto Visit.
The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres are a group of heritage theatres in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.The Winter Garden Theatre is seven storeys above the Elgin Theatre. The theatres are managed and were restored to its present state by Ontario Heritage Trust.
They are the last surviving Edwardian- period stacked theatres in the world.
They are a popular venue for performing arts, the centre also hosts theatre, opera and ballet productions as well as corporate gatherings and other special events.
Designed by prominent New York architect Thomas W. Lamb and built as the Canadian flagship for Marcus Loew’s growing chain of vaudeville houses, the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre contains two large theatres, stacked one above the other. Fewer than a dozen of these double-decker theatres were built, and the Toronto complex – the only one of its kind constructed in Canada – is now the last one operating in the world. –Elgin & Winter Theatre (Ontario Heritage Trust)
Images from Inside the Elgin Theatre
History on the walls
There were stairways inside the theatre that led to the Winter theatre, seven stories above the Elgin theatres.
I loved the interior decors of the Winter theatre – very beautiful and romantic style.
Its rooftop was decorated to depict a garden in full bloom. The walls were hand-painted with garden scenes, its columns disguised as tree trunks and its ceiling and balcony softly hung with tree branches, leaves and garden lanterns.
I loved the magic inside.
I met with one of the actors outside the theatres 🙂
Here is an image from outside the theatres during Doors Open Toronto
Learn more about next year’s Doors Open Toronto fest here and visit and volunteer with them
More about Elgin and Winter Theatre here