Monday, December 22, 2008

Variety is the Spice of Life

Great news from the PD today as they report that the now silent Variety Theatre at Lorain and West 118th will be refurbished by Westown CDC and reopened as a movie house! First Detroit-Shoreway, and now this!
A glimpse of the theatre today

On my (ever-less frequent) runs, I always passed this place with a feeling of sad nostalgia. Not an uncommon emotion while passing through much of Cleveland, I suppose, but a theatre especially evokes a feeling of 'how things used to be'. Built as a vaudeville stage and movie house in 1927, the Variety served the neighborhood ably for decades.
Lorain Ave. & the Variety Theatre in 1953

But, as the economy worsened, the neighborhoods changed, and the area slowly decayed. The theatre, by then a music venue (which actually hosted bands like Metallica and Motorhead) closed in 1986.

Now, with the promise of a renovation and a (huge, 118 page) master plan for the area, local residents and CDC's are stepping up their efforts to bring some style, sophistication and substance to the area. A welcome change indeed.

No comments: