The Art House Jamboree celebrating the 101st anniversary of The Esquire Theatre was a perfect evening. Although the underlying focus was serious–the role community plays in people’s lives– people laughed through the whole event.
You couldn’t have picked a better host than Jerry Springer, who was a name locally before he moved away, and then, due to the TV show he created after he moved away, became a name nationally. As a host last Saturday, Jerry Springer found as many opportunities to poke fun at himself as he did to praise Cincinnati.
Also on hand were John Morrison and Dorothy Meunier, pivotal figures in saving the Esquire. Having recently become a friend of John, I found it interesting that he never mentioned his acting prowess, something that was more than evident during the humorous half-hour ‘Mystery Movie,’ which was made to commemorate the re-opening of the Esquire in 1990. The film was shown Saturday night and (why didn’t he tell me before?) starred John; quite humble of him not to mention his hidden talent. Also milling around that evening was Jonathan Valin, who along with writing the screenplay for ‘Mystery Movie’ is a highly esteemed mystery writer and the executive editor of the audiophile magazine The Absolute Sound.
Add to that the talents of the Cincinnati Dancing Pigs and you have what turned out to be a perfect evening.
Finally, I should note that the painting at the top of this blog entry was done by Tom Lohre, a Clifton artist known for, among other things, his Cincinnati scenes as well as his portraits. Check out his website to see some of his other work.