Cinema takes audience down memory lane

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Plaza cinema. Pic © Lewis Jennings

The Plaza Community Cinema will host a dementia-friendly screening of the 1952 classic ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ as part of a new initiative to reconnect people with their memories through the power of film.

The Waterloo picture house plans to screen classic movies, musicals and archive films specifically selected to trigger memories. The scheme follows on from the success of a special screening of Calamity Jane in January.

The MGM masterpiece stars icons like Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds, and is often referred to as one of the greatest musicals of all time.

Plaza manager Martin Fol told JMU Journalism: “We are not the same as mainstream cinemas; we are different, diverse, and we do other things like autism screenings and filming for young children.

“It is not all about showing the big films and that is what we want to achieve in the cinema.”

Showings will take place on a large art deco screen on the third Thursday of every month, whilst factors such as lighting and audio will be controlled for sensitive members of the audience.

YouTube: JMU Journalism

Trained staff from Dementia Friends, an Alzheimer’s society initiative, will work alongside cinema staff to assist visitors. There will be easy access for wheelchair users too.

Martin added: “There are staff that are trained to deal with dementia and people from Sefton Council coming too. They are there to help and to be on hand for those who suffer with the illness, as well as family members and friends.”

About Lewis Jennings, JMU Journalism