On Friday night we went to see Regina Spektor at the Fox Theater in Oakland. It was a great show, and the setting was amazing. The Fox opened in 1928, as a grand movie palace in downtown Oakland. It closed in 1966, and narrowly escaped demolition in the 70s (it was slated to be replaced by a parking lot). After being closed for forty-three years, a newly restored Fox opened in February of this year. I’ve admired the building’s exterior since moving here twelve years ago, so it was exciting to check out the interior.
Exterior of the Fox Theater
Even during renovation, the exterior is pretty amazing.
This photo, taken from the balcony during construction, gives a glimpse of the grandeur of the interior. The detail of the ceiling is incredible:
Here is a photo of the stage area after renovation:
And a close-up of the deitites that flank the stage:
Besides the main theater, the building houses a no-cost performing arts school. Downtown Oakland has so many gorgeous buildings dating from the 20s and 30s, and it’s amazing to see another one restored so beautifully. If you live in the Bay Area, I recommend checking out a show at the Fox.
On Friday night we went to a screening of Rear Window at the Paramount Theatre in Oakland. It’s one of my favorite movies, and seeing it on a big screen with an audience of 2,000 people reacting to it was fantastic. Also fantastic is getting to see the interior of the Paramount. The theatre was built in 1931 as an Art Deco movie palace. It fell into disrepair, and was beautifully restored in the 1970s. Now it hosts the Oakland East Bay Symphony, as well as concerts and classic movies.
The Paramount's Exterior in 1932
The Lobby of the Paramount
Detail of the Lobby Walls
Interior of the Theatre
It really is an amazing place. If you live in the Bay Area, I highly recommend visiting. Besides the many performances at the Paramount, they also offer guided tours the first and third Saturday of every month.
I’m back with a little more Gossip Girl set design – this time it’s Serena van der Woodsen’s posh bedroom. This 18 year old’s room is a lot more grown up than mine!
I like the mix of traditional and contemporary – the very traditional settee with the acrylic table lamps & that sleek (is it metal?) bench at the foot of the bed. I also love the oversized upholstered headboard – I think that’s a Romo fabric, and I like how they pieced together a bunch of rectangles rather than just doing it as an unbroken expanse of fabric. She’s got Romo wallpaper on an accent wall as well:
I’ve always liked this wallpaper. It looks like they’ve framed it with molding rather than covering the whole wall with it, which I think is a really cool idea, especially with a paper as bold as this is.
No, Upper East Siders, I’m not talking about the scheming, or about the glory that is Blair Waldorf, I’m talking about the set design. There’s been a lot of discussion online about the show’s sets, and with good reason. Designer Christina K. Tonkin really hit this one out of the park.
My personal favorite is the Waldorf duplex. It’s traditional, but with some contemporary touches thrown in. Like here – the stately living room is very traditional, but then there are two leather upholstered egg chairs thrown in, and they look fantastic:
I don’t know if you can make out those sconces in the background, but they’re seriously good. Here’s a (somewhat) better image:
Sadly, they were custom designed for the show and aren’t comercially available. Then there’s the Waldorf dining room, featuring the ubiquitous Louis Ghost Chair. These have been dressed up with cushions (which I’ve never seen on a ghost chair before), and it really changes the look:
I love that single button tuft that you can see through the back of the clear acrylic chair. Until next time, XOXO.