Curzon Goldsmiths: bringing cinema back to Lewisham
Curzon Connect Development Manager Paul Homer writes about the opening of our latest cinema in partnership with Goldsmiths, University of London.
One of the real joys of working at Curzon Connect is having a fantastic range of cinema venues in which to show wonderful films. We are always looking for great new partners to help us connect films and audiences.
So when we started talking to Goldsmiths, University of London, around fifteen months ago, we knew we had found just the partner we were looking for. Goldsmiths sits in a small group of academic institutions which combine excellence and creative freedom; you only have to look at their alumni to know Goldsmiths encourages free thinking, challenging attitudes and flair. Steve McQueen, Damon Albarn, James Blake, Damien Hirst and Yinka Shonibare are all Goldsmiths Graduates.
Universities are a natural fit with independent cinema. Students always want to be at the cutting edge of culture and faculty staff tend to have a wide interest in film and culture. This is exactly why we have cinemas in Bloomsbury, Canterbury, Sheffield and Wimbledon: all have a vibrant student population.
Right from the start, Goldsmiths were enthusiastic about the project; they understood exactly how the relationship would work and the benefit it would bring to their college. We worked closely together at every stage, ensuring the specifications of the cinema were as good as it could be, that the programme was tailored to the Goldsmiths audience and that operationally the venue would run smoothly.
In the course of our discussions we realised that not only did Lewisham not have a full-time, first-run cinema, but it was the only borough in London without one. This gave the project another level of satisfaction: together we are bringing a new venue to the area, restoring what to us is an essential community service.
Lewisham is a borough with a diverse population, so we are aiming to attract the local audience as much as the student audience. The main programme will be typical Curzon: a mix of arthouse, foreign language and quality mainstream films. The added bonus of being at Goldsmiths is that every few weeks we will turn the venue over to the students and staff to run documentary work, artist moving image films, short films, political films and much more.
Curzon Goldsmiths is going to be a great venue to watch films. You should come over.