A blog and podcast from silent film accompanist/historian Ben Model covering the techniques of creating and performing live scores to silent films, as well as a discussion of the language of silent cinema. Find what goes on in the mind of a silent film accompanist before, during and after playing for a show. Learn about the aesthetics of silent filmmaking and storytelling language.
The December 2008 edition of Westchester Magazine has a piece on me in it. They'd contacted me about this in September; they have a profile in each monthly issue of a local (or hails-from) resident who then recommends his/her top 5 picks of something in their field. Chef recommends restaurants, golf pro recommends golf courses, etc. I was about to play 3 shows at the Burns Film Center, all Fritz Lang films, so it looked like we'd have to wait until I got another Westchester booking. A couple weeks later the JBFC contacted me about the annual end-of-December silent comedy program that I do with Bruce Lawton there (we've been doing this since the place opened some years ago), and so the piece would now go into the Dec issue of the magazine.
I didn't want to list a top 5 silent films, or even top 5 comedies. That was too easy and too general, so I went with a list of 5 silent comedy DVD's that wouldn't be obvious first choices but should be, figuring the readers of this magazine would be people who'd go for The General, Safety Last, The Gold Rush etc on their own. I picked 5 releases, none of which have my scores on them, of films with well-known comedians, lesser-knowns, plus an Ozu film.
The article also plugs the Dec 30th Chaplin shorts show at the Burns Film Center, which I understand is prominently featured (according to my parents) in the Burns' Nov/Dec printed calendar. Click here for the web listing for the show.