Association Overview

The name of the incorporated association is the Friends of the Astor Association Incorporated. FOTAA Inc operates as a non-profit organisation.

Our Mission

  1. To provide a forum for people interested in the preservation and promotion of pre-multiplex film culture to share this interest and further develop their knowledge and appreciation of the single-screen film going experience as embodied by the Astor Theatre.
  2. To preserve, protect, and maintain the architectural heritage of the Astor Theatre as Melbourne’s longest operating, purpose built, single-screen cinema and to continue utilisation of the building for its original purpose.
  3. To showcase the Astor Theatre as a venue for the screening of 35mm and 70mm films and so provide audiences with the opportunity to experience these original formats in the digital age.
  4. To develop the Astor Theatre as a popular centre for moving images on film, video and new media into the 21st Century.
  5. To build public awareness of, and appreciation for, the Astor Theatre and the unique film-going experience it offers to benefit the wider population by encouraging the greatest possible access to film related activities in this heritage venue.
  6. To foster relationships with other film-centric bodies, heritage movie theatres and film preservation archives in Australia and internationally.
  7. To secure public and private funding to promote the objectives of the Association.


Office Bearers

Vanda Hamilton, President

Vanda Hamilton is a community lawyer. She has been involved with the Friends of The Astor since its inception. She believes that The Astor must continue to operate as a single screen cinema with the capacity to show film. The Astor is widely recognized throughout Australia and the world as one of the last places left where film can be projected, and where films can be shown on a large scale screen. The Astor as it currently operates is as important to Melbourne and the world as any art gallery or museum. It is already a tourist attraction and, as single screen cinemas with the capacity to project film become even rarer than they are now, it will be seen as a major asset for both Melbourne and the world. To this end, Vanda is committed to working towards a not for profit trust structure that can manage both The Astor and the building in which it is housed.

Peter Brown, Vice President

I currently have 16 years of local government experience which I will utilise to protect and preserve the heritage and operation of the Astor which is a wonderful part of Victoria’s living cultural history. “I joined FOTAA to enable my attendance at the Astor to continue after 30 years of cinematic enjoyment there.”

Arabella Daniel Committee Pic
 Arabella Daniel, Secretary

“I remember the night of October 7th 1992 very clearly; the night my cinema life changed forever…

On my way to the National Theatre to see The Church in concert, my friend insisted on stopping off at a cinema for a Choc Top…an odd request, I thought….until I walked through the doors of The Astor Theatre for the first time.

The instant sense of awe and wonder; the immediate feeling that my previous cinema life had been utterly deprived and the conviction that I would never see a movie at another cinema ever again,was cemented.

After 25 years, my passion for The Astor has only grown stronger, and been passed on to my two girls. I wish for everyone in Melbourne, in Australia and the world, for generations to come, to experience movies the way they are shown at The Astor; in beautiful architectural surrounds with a deep respect for the art form.”

Andrew Illet, Treasurer

Qualified as a Chartered Accountant in the UK before becoming a Melbourne resident in 2008. “Some places can make our lives better by offering unique and inspiring experiences. I think keeping places in our communities that can do that is important.”

General Committee


Branko pic for FOTAA Web site
Branko Kezerle

Broad and vast experience in event & large scale project management, entertainer & musician in 3 bands, photographer and a massive passion to bring people together! “Member of this committee to help promote and revitalize the Astor patronage via introducing new events like combining live music with or pre film hence provide a unique social experience for the film and music goers alike! The Astor is as special to me today as it has been for the 25 years! Each and every visit over this time has always been unique and special so keen to ensure this film going experience can continue well into the future!”

 David Kube

David Kubé is a Project Manager of some 16 years experience, specialising in the IT and Telco sphere. He has been involved in supporting, and developing the IT and operational areas of Friends of the Astor Association Inc. Since the 1980s David has attended the Astor Theatre for both films, and concerts; and has a deep commitment to its continued existence and evolution as a business. He wishes to ensure The Astor Theatre remains the jewel of cinema life here in Melbourne.

Keith Partridge

Since arriving in Melbourne 8 years ago Keith has been a regular at the Astor.  When not at the Astor Keith enjoys running and traveling. “As an enthusiastic film lover and regular patron of the Astor, I am committed to ensuring the continued enjoyment of the Astor as a Melbourne icon and cinema experience – for this generation and the next!”