Saturday, August 27, 2016

episode 19: a trip to Egypt?, Keaton and Lloyd in South Korea, prepping for a 1915 Swedish silent

episode 19: a trip to Egypt?, Keaton and Lloyd in South Korea, prepping for a 1915 Swedish silent

Welcome. I get lost en route to a gig whilst dealing with a snafu in overseas travel. Next, I talk about explaining the onscreen music credit (attributed to someone who is not me) to 3,000 people in Jecheon, South Korea.
Performance recording: accompanying "Steamboat Bill, Jr." starring Buster Keaton at the 12th Jecheon International Music and Film Festival.
I talk about preparing for and playing during two outdoor shows at JIMFF for huge crowds, outdoors by a lake, as well as my recent experience with the universality of silent film.
Performance recording: accompanying "The Freshman" starring Harold Lloyd at the 12th Jecheon International Music and Film Festival.
Preparing to accompany "Madame de Thebes", a 1915 Swedish silent film, at the 11th "Silent Film Days" festival in Tromsø, Norway; the challenges of a contemporary audience decoding the cinematic storytelling language of a 1915 drama, and in particular one with footage missing, and how creating a new score can help the film go over better.
DVD/BluRay recording: a few minutes of my score for Fritz Lang's "The Spiders", recorded using multi-tracked orchestral samples on the Kurzweil PC2 digital keyboard for a restoration just released on BluRay by Kino Lorber.
I share a brief rundown of my September shows, and some news about coming to L.A., and wrap up with a note about the "ripple effect" and filling empty seats. Thanks for listening!

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episode 19: a trip to Egypt?, Keaton and Lloyd in South Korea, prepping for a 1915 Swedish silent

episode 19: a trip to Egypt?, Keaton and Lloyd in South Korea, prepping for a 1915 Swedish silent

Welcome. I get lost en route to a gig whilst dealing with a snafu in overseas travel. Next, I talk about explaining the onscreen music credit (attributed to someone who is not me) to 3,000 people in Jecheon, South Korea.
Performance recording: accompanying "Steamboat Bill, Jr." starring Buster Keaton at the 12th Jecheon International Music and Film Festival.
I talk about preparing for and playing during two outdoor shows at JIMFF for huge crowds, outdoors by a lake, as well as my recent experience with the universality of silent film.
Performance recording: accompanying "The Freshman" starring Harold Lloyd at the 12th Jecheon International Music and Film Festival.
Preparing to accompany "Madame de Thebes", a 1915 Swedish silent film, at the 11th "Silent Film Days" festival in Tromsø, Norway; the challenges of a contemporary audience decoding the cinematic storytelling language of a 1915 drama, and in particular one with footage missing, and how creating a new score can help the film go over better.
DVD/BluRay recording: a few minutes of my score for Fritz Lang's "The Spiders", recorded using multi-tracked orchestral samples on the Kurzweil PC2 digital keyboard for a restoration just released on BluRay by Kino Lorber.
I share a brief rundown of my September shows, and some news about coming to L.A., and wrap up with a note about the "ripple effect" and filling empty seats. Thanks for listening!

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Monday, August 01, 2016

episode 18: scoring The Bride's Play, explaining the 1920s jokes, travel to South Korea and Norway

episode 18: scoring The Bride's Play, explaining the 1920s jokes, travel to South Korea and Norway

Welcome (back)! Long time no podcast, so I recap a few highlights from March-July. Such as: finishing a year of being Professor Model, releasing the "Found at Mostly Lost" DVD, et al.
Performance recording: accompanying "The Moth" starring Norma Talmadge at Mostly Lost 4 in 2015 on the Walker Digital Theatre Organ, at the Library of Congress.
A discussion of the unique situation of being able to play a live show of a rare film just before recording a score for it, in this case Marion Davies in "The Bride's Play". (Did you pledge to Ed Lorusso's Kickstarter for this project?)
Performance recording: accompanying Ozu's "Tokyo Chorus" at the Cinema Arts Center on theatre organ, using Paramount Organ Works' sample set via Hauptwerk.
My upcoming trip to play at a big festival in South Korea, plus news about an award from the American Theatre Organ Society. Then - a tip to presenters and accompanists about the merits of giving an audience cultural historical context for a silent film before a show.
Performance recording: a few minutes of a live score on piano for Laurel & Hardy in "Putting Pants on Philip" at the Silent Clowns Film Series.
Looking forward to my 11th time at the "Silent Film Days" festival in Tromsø Norway, plus fall plans to release a few DVDs and some news about the current Silent Clowns shows. We close with a call-to-arms about Audience Preservation and the fact that you can't wonder "why wasn't this advertised more?" Thanks for listening!

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Sunday, February 28, 2016

episode 17: choosing music for a scene, Boise world premiere, Steamboat Bill Jr, Hammond theatre organ

episode 17: organs and orchestras - choosing music for a scene, Boise world premiere, Steamboat Bill Jr, Hammond theatre organ

Welcome
Recent shows recap: William S. Hart, Bert Williams, Criterion release of "The Kid"
Boise Philharmonic - world premiere of new score for "Dog Shy" with Charley Chase
Recording: in performance at Wesleyan silent film course, Larry Semon in "The Bellhop"
Choosing music for a scene: Chaplin films
A minidisc miracle
Recording: in performance at Sedgwick Cultural Center (Philadelphia) in 2002, accompanying "The Cat and the Canary" on a Hammond theatre organ.
Keeping it fresh, trying new things - 2 months of William S. Hart
Accompanying "Steamboat Bill, Jr". on a Jaeckel pipe organ
Recording: in performance at the Sluberski Film Series at Concordia College, accompanying Buster Keaton's "Steamboat Bill, Jr."
RIP Harry Weiss, silent film accompanist
Upcoming performances at LoC, Cinema Arts Centre, Silent Clowns Film Series
Recording: in performance for 700 school kids at the Egyptian Theatre in Boise, ID, for Stan Laurel in "Oranges and Lemons"
Audience preservation
Thanks, and closing

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Sunday, January 17, 2016

Harry Weiss, silent film accompanist (1917-2016)

RIP Harry Weiss (1917-2016), an inspiration and a friend. He passed away peacefully January 7, two months shy of his 99th birthday, active right up to the end…playing piano every day and working on another CD. Harry was the Cinema Arts Centre​'s first silent film accompanist, playing for silents there in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. He played his first silent – "Intolerance" – for a film club at his college CCNY. The photo below was taken at the Bangor Opera House in July 2009 when I went up to Maine to meet and play a show with him. I will cherish the phone chats we had over the last 9 years; he was always full of energy and good cheer, and kept up with my goings-on on Facebook(!), Talking with him was always a shot in the arm for me.

If you ever have the opportunity to connect with someone one or two generations older than you who does what you do…do it.

Ben Model (L) and Harry Weiss (R) at the Bangor Opera House, July 2009.
(photo by Kathy Tenga-Gonzalez)
Here's a video profile on Harry from 2013 by the Bangor Daily News. The article that accompanies the video is full of info about Harry's life and work.



Here's the poster for the show Harry and I did in 2009:

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

episode 16: Norwegian edition - Too Much Johnson, Roald Amundsen, Chaplin's City Lights

episode 16: Norwegian edition - Too Much Johnson, Roald Amundsen, Chaplin's City Lights

Welcome
10th anual "Silent Film Days" festival in Tromsø, Norway
Shows for 6th grade school kids, childrens' show on Saturday
Recording: in performance at Verdensteatret cinema, Baby Peggy in "Carmen Jr."
October DVD release of Baby Peggy in "The Family Secret", restored by Library of Congress
Challenge of scoring workprint-rushes of "Too Much Johnson"
Recording: in performance at Verdensteatret cinema, accompanying Orson Welles' "Too Much Johnson"
Performing as part of Arctic Philharmonic accompanying Chaplin's "City Lights" conducted by Timonthy Brock
Recording: in performance at Verdensteatret cinema accompanying Roald Amundsen north pole expedition film
Upcoming performances at LoC, Cinema Arts Centre, Silent Clowns Film Series "Mark of Zorro"
Thanks, and closing

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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

episode 15: Laurel & Hardy, orchestral Chaplin gig, scoring Technicolor at MoMA

episode 15: Laurel and Hardy, orchestral Chaplin gig, scoring Technicolor at MoMA

Welcome
Silent Film Sound and Music Archive
Recap of June shows: Clara Bow in "Mantrap" in Lake Placid, Mostly Lost 4 at Library of Congress, a special L&H program concept from Bruce Lawton at Silent Clowns
Recording: in performance at Silent Clowns Film Series, Laurel and Hardy in "Duck Soup"
Returning to Tromsø, Norway for "Silent Film Days", and special Chaplin accomp assignment
Recording: in performance at MoMI, accompanying Chaplin's "The Immigrant" for 5th graders
Upcoming shows: Silent Clowns' "Men In Trouble", Cinema Arts Centre shows of Ernie Kovacs plus restored Baby Peggy
Recording: in performance at MoMA for "Toll of the Sea" from Technicolor series
The importance of participating in audience preservation
Thanks, and closing

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