Hartford Has It


On Friday I had an opportunity to go once again to Cinestudio at Trinity College, “world cinema since 1970”.  I had the chance to say hello to an old friend, James Hanley, the co-founder of Cinestudio. We have known each other since my move to Hartford in 1972. He is one of Hartford’s quiet treasures who created  a movie theater that is second to none in the country. We talked of the past years since I have been away from Hartford and about the ongoing improvements and changes at Cinestudio. Throughout the years James has been able to keep up with, and in many ways stay ahead of, movie houses by always installing state-of-the-art equipment and techniques. We movie goers have benefited from the small screen, big sound of the theater. I reminded James that it was at Cinestudio where I first saw “Rocky Horror Picture Show,” never imagining the 

wondrous experience of chanting with the dialogue. What a treasure we have.

During the weekend I was engaged in a conversation with a friend who wondered if I wasn’t glad to be so close to New York and Boston to be able to tap into the cultural opportunities found in these two cities. I responded with pointing 

out that Hartford has cultural advantages aplenty, that I feel no compelling argument for travel. Access to theater, dance, music, libraries and art is immediate and everywhere. On most nights I can find an opening, performance or presentation, often multiples. As the fall approaches I plan to secure season tickets to several organizations so as not to hyperventilate on which performance to choose. How very fortunate we are to have such great access to these events. So I can only respond with who needs Boston or New York when right here we are offered such an exciting and profound array of options?

Since returning to this good city I find that I have become an uninhibited cheerleader for what makes me happy to be back. In future blogs I hope to continue to point out what is so good about Hartford. I am troubled by the sense of an apology when talking about Hartford. I am the new guy but an old hand about the city. Rediscovering Cinestudio is one such example. Do yourself a favor and sign up for their electronic notices which can be done online.