Evelyn Cseh, Young Optimist: “I Have Hope In Romanian Cinema”

A couple of days ago I covered a small story about the almost abandoned cinema buildings from Romania, highlighting the buildings from Iasi. It became a little controversial. Some people revolted in a good way, aware of the real situation of the once-vivid buildings, now forgotten and in danger of falling apart, while some others disagreed, convinced that this kind of article does nothing but putting the city itself in the wrong light.

I asked for feedback and images from readers with the abandoned cinemas from their own locations, in order to switch on a red light somewhere, in an institution, to raise an awareness of some sort (I don’t have high hopes though; raising awareness takes time, and it won’t work by itself anyway). Instead, I got at least one unexpected feedback. A letter from a young girl named Evelyn. An optimistic one, the exact opposite of my vision from the previous post.

This letter really moved me, shaking a little the pessimistic view over the Romanian future of cinema. And it wasn’t the fact that somebody seems to do something; it could be nothing. What really sticks out is her childish, yet iron-bound hope. I previously asked: “Is there something we can do?”. She answered, as she was trying to prove me wrong: “If somebody truly wants something, then they will find no excuses for doing it”. 

Here’s the full letter:

“Hello, my name is Evelyn Cseh. I come from a beautiful tiny city from Romania called Baia Mare. I have read your article about the abandoned cinema buildings from Romania and thought you might want to hear this story too. 


As I already mentioned, this tiny city, Baia Mare, isn’t very famous like Bucharest or Iasi or Cluj, but it has potential. It even is between the finalist cities that wants to be the next European capital of culture. We have an incredibly beautiful cinema called “Cinema Minerul” (“The Miner Cinema”). It has been closed for ages, but if you ask any older person that has lived in this city for long time, they will all say in the past it was their little “gold mine”. Time has passed, the rats came in and nobody went to the cinema anymore. It died, and so its beauty.


But every story has a good part too. There are a few years now since our major started to invest in renewing the cinema. The outside is done, but the inside needs some time and money as well. It is closed actually, but it was open for 3 days when there was an annual arts exhibition. I made some photos and thought you might want to share them. 


There are many people in the pictures and some signs that there were some workers doing their job. It is still fascinating how beautiful it is to be there.


I really do have hope and know that this will be one main attraction when it will be done. I just wanted to share this with you, because there is hope to make some ideas possible. It is just a matter of time and investments, but if somebody truly wants something, then they will find no excuses for doing it.




I thank you for your time and patience for reading this and wish you a great day.


Evelyn C.”

Original images by Evelyn C. Source main photo here.

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Romanian self-taught writer, based in Cyprus, interested in contemporary art, unconventional culture and gonzo journalism. Writing for almost a decade, he is agnostic, supports a censorship-free society and reads way less than he wants.

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