First Act: Cinematique

WILMINGTON -- With the flip of a switch the century old projector on the third floor of Thalian Hall comes to life. And movies that you can't see just anywhere shine down onto a screen set up on the mainstage.

"I get to see movies that aren't average. You know, they're different. Some of them are foreign films. There are some really great comic films that I see here that I wouldn't see anywhere else," says Brian O'Reilly.

For the past 150 years, Thalian Hall has been home to numerous live theater productions, but in recent years the stage has transformed every week into an art house showcasing notable independent and foreign films. The name is Cinematique, but after showing hundreds of movies, the picture's getting a bit fuzzy.

Over the years the projection equipment has started to show some wear and tear, but the organizers of Cinematique have a plan to keep the program in focus.

"It's worth preserving. We want to preserve it, but we want to fix it. We also want it to be a quality film-going experience," says Ann Berry with WHQR, a sponsor of Cinematique.

So Cinematique is accepting donations to help renovate the equipment.

"It's really something that I think the community finds valuable and something worth keeping going as long as there a need for it," says Berry.

If you would like to make a donation to help fix up the projection equipment you can send a check to WHQR FM, 254 North Front Street, Wilmington, NC 28401.