submitted by Bingara Advocate on 20.04.2006
Front Page, Bingara Advocate, Vol 73, No. 11., Tuesday April 4, 2006.
A book launch, the presentation of photographs and a plaque commemorating the three men who built the Roxy, a ball, and free screening of films, combined to make the 70th Anniversary of the opening of the Roxy Theatre one which would have surely gladdened the hearts of Peter Feros, Emanuel Aroney and George Psaltis.
Accommodation in the town was booked out, for the occasion.
Visitors to Bingara were welcomed by Gwydir Shire Council Mayor, Cr. Mark Coulton, who recalled his first taste of Greek culture when he became friends with a boy named Emanuel Calligeros, and indeed felt some envy towards him. “The Greek families always had the best play lunch,” Cr. Coulton said.
“Members of the Greek community have always been justifiably proud of their heritage, and the Gwydir Shire is also proud to have become the custodian of part of that heritage.”
Cr. Coulton that he had recently been to a meeting in Sydney where regional tourism was high on the agenda.
“The three men who built the Roxy had remarkable foresight. By building of the Roxy, the cafe and the guesthouse, the men, trading as Peters and Co., were involved in regional tourism, 70 years before its time,” Cr. Coulton said.
The Movie Ball which followed was attended by about 200 people, many of whom dressed in 1930s outfits and some who dressed as more modem actors or film characters.
The ball was officially opened by Sophia Alexander (nee, Zantiotis), a descendant by marriage of Peter Feros.
Ms. Alexander, who, through her work in the Ministry of the Arts, was familiar with the Roxy restoration project, but was unaware until recently that she was in fact related to one of the original owners.
It should be noted that Ms. Alexander opened the ball as a member of the Feros family, and was not representing the Ministry.
She quoted from a letter, opponent to the project, Victor Peacocke, wrote to his local member in the 1930s, referring to “the Greek invasion of our little burg”.
“Well, we are back,” Ms. Alexander said, ‘and I have much pleasure in declaring the second Movie ball open.”
Speech introducing Bob Carr at the Sydney launch
Review(s) of the book
Professor Janis Wiltons' speech, Bingara book launch
Details of the Bingara book launch, photograph unveiling, and 70th Anniversary Ball
Founders photographs unveiled, Roxy, Bingara
Kytherians flocked to Bingara from everywhere
Peter Feros's descendants
Descendants and freinds of Roxy Theatre founder, Peter Feros
The book Katsehamos and the Great Idea is available from the publisher,
32 Calder Road, Darlington, NSW,
or email here
phone (02) 9319 1513
and also from Gleebooks, 49 Glebe Point Road, Glebe NSW, 2037 and selected bookshops.
Katsehamos and the Great Idea is also available in the New England and Northwest region of NSW, from the Roxy Theatre, Maitland Street, Bingara.
Phone: 02 67240003
or email here
For further information
Phone: Sydney, (02) 9319 1513
Mobile: 0429 322 857
submitted by Jim Comino on 28.04.2006
My fathers' name was Theodore Minas Comino Palavras, and my mother was Hazel Irene Comino, (nee)Donnelly, from Ireland. They were married at Bellingen NSW.
Re: the Roxy Theatre in Bingara.
I was born in Bingara in 1940, when Dad left Wee Waa - Comino Bros, he went to Bellingen and run the picture theatre there for 4 years and was credited with showing the first Cinesound films in NSW there according to a historian, [probably Kevin Cork], who recently made contact with my brother, Michael, in Merriwa.
He went to Moree into a cafe from there, and due to the depression left Moree, eventually settling in Bingara.
He worked at the Roxy, on and off. He was part of the history of that Theatre.
Teacher, journalist, poet and author, Sydney NSW Australia
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