Local singers will supplement the singing in special screening of 1944's "Cover Girl"

Feb 7, 2014

If you’re looking for a completely original idea for Valentine’s Day, a collaboration between The Carnegie and Cincy World Cinema may be the answer. Our film expert Larry Thomas previews the unique way they will present the 1944 film Cover Girl, starring Rita Hayworth and a young Gene Kelly, with Joshua Steele from The Carnegie. To supplement the less-than-stunning singing in the film, a chorus of local vocalists will do the singing live, synched to the film.


It’s becoming more rare these days to have the opportunity to see a classic film on the big screen. And by classic film, I don’t mean Back to the Future or Ferris Bueller. Coming up for a special Valentine’s Day treat, Cincinnati World Cinema and The Carnegie Arts Center in Covington have joined forces to bring you quite a romantic evening.

This Thursday and Friday, February 13th and 14th, start the evening at 6 pm with an optional catered candlelight dinner in the Carnegie Gallery, reservations required.

The classic movie I referred to is the 1944 Cover Girl, in brilliant Technicolor, starring Rita Hayworth and Gene Kelly. Although both had made musicals before, this is the film that made them A-list stars. Harry Cohn, the shrewd but feared head of Columbia Pictures, was grooming Rita Hayworth for big things. He made two black-and-white musicals pairing Hayworth with Fred Astaire, which were successful, and had even loaned her to 20th Century Fox for her first Technicolor outing on Blood and Sand with Tyrone Power. But when he unleashed his titian tressed terpsichorean in Cover Girl, history was made. Having recently watched this again for the first time in years, I was once again captured by the charm and energy of Cover Girl. It’s a typical Hollywood boy and girl plot, but made special by everyone involved. In addition to Hayworth and Kelly, it features two character actors who are an asset to any film: Eve Arden and Phil Silvers. And let’s not forget the songs with music by Jerome Kern and lyrics from Ira Gershwin, including the beautiful ballad “Long Ago and Far Away,” which earned Ira Gershwin more money that any song he had written with his brother George.

Cover Girl was a huge success and earned five Academy Award nominations. It was a big boost to war weary America at a time when victory was expected just around the corner. This optimistic Technicolor extravaganza was just what the doctor ordered.

So if the thought of a date night with your Valentine featuring the food and the film have you interested, then, as they say on television, “but wait… there’s more!”

Yes, you get the food and the film and a live performance — featuring a vocal ensemble performing in synch with key musical segments in the film, the brainchild of Josh Steele, Carnegie theatre director.