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Silent Movie – Steamboat Bill, Jr.
July 18 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm CDT
Organist Benjamin Kolodziej will present an authentic screening of Buster Keaton’s 1928 feature-length silent film, Steamboat Bill, Jr. This film, one of the last of the silent era, is a comedic drama involving competing steamboat captains, family disappointments and falling in love, and was largely written and directed by Keaton, a master of comedic timing and deadpan expressions. One original reviewer understatedly characterized the film upon release as “perhaps the best comedy of the year so far,” while the New York Times called it a “sorry affair.” Nonetheless, for decades audiences increasingly have been drawn to this silent movie and it consistently ranks among the favorite and most entertaining silent films in history. The Disney debut of Mickey Mouse, Steamboat Willie, was directly inspired by Keaton’s classic.
To enhance the authentic feel of the evening, Benjamin Kolodziej will perform an original score written for organ to accompany the film, utilizing popular music contemporary to the era and setting of the film to enhance the drama and comedy, just as an organist would have done upon Steamboat Bill, Jr.’s release in 1928.