The Demise of the Music Halls

The world might change slowly, but progress in many forms is often the final nail in any industry’s coffin. While the First World War was seen as the time when music halls sang their farewell song, the invention of the cinema was the shape of that nail. Audiences, ever fickle, found this new form of entertainment to be endlessly fascinating. Rather than spend time with friends at old-fashioned venues, they flocked to darkened theaters and lost themselves in the action on the screen.

Over the last century and a half, audiences have continued their love affair with the cinema. There are few of them who enjoy live musical entertainment outside of concerts or the theater. Participatory venues such as music halls are not seen as socially acceptable even though karaoke clubs have become a popular way to spend an evening, and audiences have found other types of entertainment where participation is part of the enjoyment.