Historic Alex Theater- 3D Scan
(originally posted on LA Times May 14, 2015)
The Alex Theatre’s backstage is off-limits to patrons, but a new 3D virtual tour of the historic venue lets anyone get a peek behind the curtains as well a dollhouse view of the auditorium.
Montrose-based Realtor Kendyl Young uses a tech service called Matterport that features a specially designed camera. She takes lots of pictures and digitally stitches them together as a means to advertise properties for sale.
But her longtime love for the Alex inspired her to take shot after shot inside the theater, a process that took her many hours.
“The Alex is a part of my DNA… I thought that this was something valuable to the citizens of Glendale,” said Young, who has performed as a dancer and played taiko drums.
To create the virtual tour, Young set up the Matterport camera on a tripod and let the device take 360-degree images.
Aside from preserving a snapshot in time of the Alex, Young said she wants the venue’s management to use the 3D tour for promotional purposes.
And that’s one of the reasons why Maria Sahakian, the Alex’s director of marketing and events, jumped at the chance when she was approached by Young.
Sahakian said the virtual tour makes it easier for theater producers to see what kind of stage they would be working with as well as a look inside the dressing rooms and the green room.
Those checking out the theater can also get a look at the auditorium from just about any angle.
Take a virtual tour below:
“It allows producers and promoters who are not based in Los Angeles to get a precise sense of what the theater looks like without even setting foot inside,” Sahakian said.
The virtual tour is currently available on Young’s website for her realty business, and it was posted just a few weeks ago on the Alex’s website, so it’s too early to say if it’s won over any potential promoters yet, Sahakian said.
Roughly $5 million in renovations were completed on the Alex Theatre last year, which included bigger dressing rooms to accommodate productions with larger casts.
With its 90th birthday approaching on Sept. 4, Sahakian said it was a great opportunity to immortalize the theater after its face-lift by creating the tour.
“So this absolutely does preserve the Alex as it appears today, after several decades of evolving and becoming the esteemed performing arts center as we know it currently,” she said.