Country Dancing

The Historic Robins Theatre in Warren, Ohio


In January, I attended the inaugural talent show by Senior Showcase at the beautiful Robins Theatre in Warren, Ohio. For this article, first I will give you some information on the venue and then I will briefly discuss the show. I had never been to the Robins; many people told me that I would be impressed with its features. Believe me when I say that pictures don’t do this theater justice; it is well worth the trip to experience it in person! For their schedule of events, go to: Robins Theatre

The history of the Robins Theatre, according to their website:

It was commissioned by Daniel Robins, who was an early partner of Abraham Warner of the famed Warner Brothers. It was designed by C. Howard Crane and I. J. Goldston and constructed by the Charles Shutrump and Sons Company of Youngstown, Ohio. It was built in 1922 at a cost of $300,000. The exterior of the building is in the Italian Renaissance style, while the theater is Adam Style with Vermont marble columns, grand staircases, ornate walls and ceilings.

The Robins Theatre opened to a full house on January 9, 1923. The stage was once used for vaudeville productions and could be converted from screening motion pictures to presenting live theater performances in 24 hours. It remained in continuous operation until 1974, when the doors were permanently closed. By 2017, the theater remained almost completely original; however, more than thirty years of vacancy had taken its toll.

In December of 2017, the Robins Theatre was purchased by Downtown Development Group (DDG), which committed to restoring the theater in two years with as much historical accuracy as possible. The renovated theater is equipped to accommodate concerts, stage shows and film screenings. The Robins Theatre is managed by Sunrise Entertainment, which presents nationally recognized acts: musicians, musicals, and comedians; along with staging community theater.

The Senior Showcase is a Tri-County, non-profit production company showcasing talented senior citizens in the area. They are an organization providing a platform for performers, age 55 and over, to showcase talents cultivated throughout their lives. For more information, visit their website: Senior Showcase Ohio.

The talent show had singers, dancers, comedians, a musician, and a magician; there were three different line dance groups from the SCOPE Centers who performed. First was Jan’s class from the Cortland location; their classic country costumes were complete with cowgirl hats and belt buckles. Second was a group from Howland; they line danced to a medley of songs, including both costume changes and various props. Third, Kim joined her class from Newton Falls; they wore sparkly costumes that matched their disco theme. There was also a group of tap dancers, instructed by Pat from SCOPE; they performed to one of my favorite songs, “Boogie Shoes.”

Take my advice and check out the Robins Theatre; it is a perfect example of how important it is to save our local historical landmarks!

Dori Yez will continue to write her monthly article here; and may also “guest instruct” at local venues/events!

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