Cinema Hearts: An ex-pageant queen turned indie rocker

When he started performing as Cinema heartCaroline Weinroth set out to unite two icons of Americana that seemed impossibly far apart: Miss America and the electric guitar.

After graduating college, the singer-songwriter tried to make that fantasy a reality, competing on the pageant circuit and winning a handful of crowns throughout Virginia. In addition to giving her post-college life some structure, the pageant world allowed her to see how girls and women are educated and treated in society.

“I always felt like I was performing or presenting myself a certain way to suit what other people wanted,” Weinroth says. “Lately, I realized that it doesn’t work; it doesn’t ultimately make you happy.”

While Cinema Hearts has previously looked at the subject of the female experience through the prism of pageantry, the recently released film has the most intense determination yet.Your ideal“EP. Five-Tracker begins with two songs from the perspective of a woman who is expected to be: a queen, a princess, a trophy, a fantasy, an idol. A few years removed from the scene. Later, Weinroth is dealing with the larger social struggle that the encounters indicate.

“You can present yourself as this very feminine, submissive, supportive woman, and that can get you ahead – you get invited to parties, people like you, people picture you. People want to be your friends, whatever,” she says. “Eventually, you go home alone and it’s an empty feeling.”

But even if Weinroth and his fellow competitors were alone, they weren’t alone: ​​The competitions provided a sense of community that reminded him of his experiences in the DIY music scene, a connection he found on the all-electronic closer “Sister.” Searches.

“It’s grassroots people across the state and country who put on a show,” she explains. “Obviously, it’s a very different ethos and aesthetic, but at the core of it are people who want to do something special in their everyday lives.”

Even with his time in competition over, Weinroth has tried to keep special things happening, both within and without Cinema Hearts. Although he worked in live sound for years and now. teaches Guitar, piano and voice, his efforts to bring musical events and leadership to his community were not always easy. She recalls a local library that didn’t trust her or take DIY music seriously.

Clearly, it wasn’t DC’s Mount Pleasant Library, which raised thousands of dollars with the now ubiquitous shirts and totes that ask, “What’s more punk than a public library?Just as obviously, this library wouldn’t have heard Weinroth’s music, which reaches back to ’60s girl groups and the doo-wop era for inspiration.

“We all know Cinema Hearts is the most dangerous band,” she laughs.

September 23 at 10pm at Comet Ping Pong, 5037 Connecticut Ave NW. $15. Proof of vaccination is required.

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