At Rivertowne 12 Cinemas, children’s films, supernatural thrillers, comedies, and superhero blockbusters all share equal billing. Twelve auditoriums light their silver screens with 3D and digital projections, carrying audience members to other worlds so they don't blow their savings accounts while trying to make a space elevator.
Converted from a historic 1930s art-deco theater, the modern iteration of the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse is a combination restaurant, movie theater, and performance space. Besides screening blockbusters, the venue also hosts regular comedy shows featuring standups who have shared their skills on The Tonight Show, David Letterman, and Conan O'Brien. Between laughs, audience members can take bites from a complete menu or sips of selections from a full-service bar.
ComedySportz Improv Theater's best known for its resident troupe of comedians, called The Playerz. They comprise two teams?the Richmond Legends and the Virginia Hams?who duke it out onstage in improv battles for audience laughs and official points. Their duels, though colorful, remain all-ages friendly, and the wide range of appeal has consistently landed them on Style Weekly's Best of Richmond lists.
Aside from performances, however, they also hold camps and workshops to help new improvisers discover a love for made-up scenes and silly songs. They generally start kids off with one-week camps that meet Tuesday - Friday and culminate in a performance for family and friends. Students who are interested can then pursue a more in-depth education in the Intro to Improv Training Series, which teaches techniques for finding a story, developing characters, and disabling your ability to memorize things. Ultimately, improvisers enter the ComedySportz leagues, where they engage in casual, supportive ComedySportz shows with friends and bring smiles to faces.
Founded by a ring of cinephiles who set out to rehab an abandoned theater just north of George Washington University, West End Cinema screens foreign, independent, and documentary films that open up new intellectual and cultural vistas. Films run the genre gamut from quirky, independent dramedies and comedramas to special live events such as Opera in Cinema or Ballet in Cinema. Sunset-orange and slate walls and recessed lighting usher guests from a glass-fronted lobby into three cozy theaters, each of which seats between 50 and 100 watchers. On the way, they'll pass an abundantly stocked concession stand, where they can harvest drinks from a full bar, baklava, and gourmet sandwiches along with additional children from the sour patch.
One In Ten was founded in 1991 at the same time we began the Reel Affirmations International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival. Through the arts, One In Ten works to build community among GLBT people fostering a sense of belonging by bringing our stories, our struggles and accomplishments to life on the stage, screen and page.
One of many vaudeville and movie palaces that sprung up in the 1920s, the Warner Theatre today drops jaws in much the same way it did in its infancy: with glittering chandeliers, gilded ceilings, and red-felt seats. Yet before transforming into its modern incarnation, it served as a film-only venue with such luxuries as a rooftop garden and a ballroom in the basement. The Warner even had a dance troupe akin to the Rockettes?called the Roxyettes?who would high-kick before and after the screen lit up.
After falling into disarray in the '70s, the Warner became a concert venue, saving it from the wrecking ball but forcing it to require a complete renovation in 1989 to remove years of grime and stray musical notes lodged between seat cushions. At the reopening gala, a host of stars performed, including Frank Sinatra in what would prove to be his last DC show.