Sunday, August 23, 2009

The show must go on

This month, the Cleveland Scene offers up the 2009 Annual Manual: How to Live in Cleveland. It's full up with inside info on the fun side of life in Northeast Ohio. You can read the entire guide here, complete with formatting, graphics and links (I have essays on pages 19 and 25), or you can just read the text of my efforts "Cleveland for Parents" and "Cleveland for Literary Types" via those respective links.

One of the things I recommend in the "Parents" essay is a trip to Cleveland's historic Playhouse Square, where free backstage tours can be had on the first Saturday of every month. Below is a sampling of what you'll see if you ever decide to take my advice. My unfortunate attempts at photography do no justice to these incredible old theaters, but they might whet your appetite to head downtown and visit these Grand Dames for yourself.

Dig those classic marquees.

Ceiling detail inn the lobby of the State.

The State Theatre Lobby with the original murals.

Nearby nosh-pit Otto Moser's boasts dozens of ancient signed photos on the walls.

Shot from backstage at the Allen. Operators used to change colors of the "window" lights to accentuate the action on the silent screen: red for fire, blue for night, etc.

Goat backstage getting ready for his big close-up.

The ceiling of the Palace.

Creepy underbelly of the Square.

Righteous corned beef at Otto's after the tour.

Outer lobby of the Allen.

The business end of lighting at the Ohio.

Alcove detail in the Palace.

Box seats done proper.

Hello right back-atcha!

More pix from the walls of Otto Moser's.

The guys manning the controls for the curtains had better not be nipping on the sauce. Look at all those levers!

Coolio planters line the streets outside.

Perhaps my favorite thing of all on the square, the endless starry night that graces the outer lobby of the Ohio. Sorry that I didn't properly capture it, but believe me, this tiny Grecian night never fails to take my breath away.

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Alan states said...

Wow, never knew about the tours. Our theatres are spectacular. Hanna too. Gonna go check that out, thanka Erin!

Adam Harvey said...

I wondered if the annual manual was available online anywhere. Thanks for letting me know!

Tony Rugare said...

Thanks for the tour! Ashamed to say I have not taken full advantage of what Cleveland has to offer.

The Revelationist said...

I have been through Ohio; which is to say that I have not really seen it. I do enjoy old theaters. They had a sense of purpose and style; unlike the carbon stamped efficiency boxes of our current multi-plex movie houses.