Victoria Theatres and the “Flu Ban”

The Daily Colonist October 9 1918

The place and the time: Victoria B.C. in Fall 1918, the fourth year of the Great War. The stars: Two teenage sister theatre ushers who are making money for their family while Dad is away at war, and a couple of school-aged kids who love coming “down town” to see Westerns. Suddenly, in the face of a epidemic of world-wide proportions, the doors to the theatres are shut indefinitely. What will happen?

Now showing, a four-reel melodrama of adversity against all odds…

Part 1 – At the Playhouses – in which we visit the playhouses, see the shows and meet the audience…

Part 2 – The theatres go dark – Influenza comes to the shores of Victoria…The Government imposes the “flu ban” and theatres go dark….what will happen while theatre managers await the somewhat elusive period, the lifting of the ban?

Part 3 – The Flu Ban is lifted – Footlights flash after a long interval and our heroes return to the stage and screen. Theatres are thronged with young movie-goers, yet the evil contagion still rears its head……

Part 4 – The Show Goes On in 1919 – 1920 – As the flu’s waves slowly ebb away, the show goes on into the new decade.