Last week I submitted my theater, and an accompanying video, to my “boss” and famed theater designer Theo Kalomirakis. I wanted to get Theo’s thoughts on my design and see what, if any, improvements he might suggest -not that I have a great deal of room or money for said improvements mind you. I didn’t do it to brag, or to see if I could show up the “master” or my fellow colleague John Sciacca. I did it out of fun. Well, it has been almost a week and Theo has written a response and weighed in on my theater, as well as John’s.

Here’s an excerpt from Theo’s critique of my reference theater.

Andrew had an unexpected ally when he decided to build his theater: His budget—or more precisely, the lack thereof. They say that money corrupts, which is also true in interior design. Put a designer together with an overambitious client—especially one with an unlimited budget—and nasty things can happen. Some clients—especially those who fall under the category of “new money”—wouldn’t know the meaning of the word restraint if it slapped them in the face. If they want something badly—more often than not to impress their friends and neighbors—they will try to get it no matter what.

Lack of pretensions is also what characterizes Andrew’s dedicated theater. I’m sure Andrew had no desire to impress us with his interior-decorating skills. He knew what he wanted, and what he wanted was to be able to focus on watching movies without being distracted by the environment. We don’t ooh! and aah! looking at his room because that’s not what he had in mind. He wanted a multi-purpose space with a non-invasive design that would be, as he put it, three things: a casual home theater, a reference-grade mastering suite, and an environment in which he could easily test and evaluate equipment. He achieved his goal by not losing track of his priorities. I like his theater because, design-wise, it is honest.