The two years or so since Gateway Film Center’s last Nina West Presents program have been a real drag.
But the return of the series on April 1? That will be music to Columbus’s ears.
The beloved series with a raucous, packed-house following went on hiatus in 2015 when calendars become too busy. The long-time friendship between Nina and the film center stayed alive and well, but between Nina’s rocketing performance career and GFC’s growth as a nationally recognized indie theater, schedules just couldn’t mesh.
“We would keep trying to get back together, but one or the other would always have a commitment,” said GFC President and Programmer Chris Hamel. “But we never stopped talking. We’ve always been looking to bring Nina and her series back, and we’re so thrilled it finally worked.”
While it drew fans from around the city in its first incarnation, both Hamel and West worked to find a way to make the experience even more fun on its return, Hamel said. The program, which has always paired movies with West’s bawdy comedic performances, will now be a full-on sing-along series, presenting musicals with captions in a sing-your-heart-out, no-judgement atmosphere.
“There’s no better way to spend a night out than laughing and singing along to a musical, and there’s no better place to do that than at Gateway Film Center,” said Nina. “This will be the most fun you can legally have in a movie theater.”
The screening schedule includes classic musicals with recognizable songs, and ends with a holiday extravaganza that’s still being planned:
- April 1 – The Sound of Music – official sing-along version
- July 1 – Grease – official sing-along version
- Oct. 7 – Little Shop of Horrors – official sing-along version
- Dec. 23 – Nina West Holiday Pageant
Each Nina West Presents begins with a 4:30 p.m. mixer at the film center, followed by a 6 p.m. showtime.