Silent Film Festival tramps back to better days


Note: The print version or this article contained an error regarding the performance venues. The following is the accurate version. – Ed.

ArMack Orchestra

ARCATA – Escape the insanity of the election season and revisit the brilliance of one of the most consistently relevant actors of modern times as the ArMack Orchestra presents its annual Silent Film Festival featuring Charlie Chaplin’s The Adventurer. The festival opens at the McKinleyville High School this Thursday.

The 70-member strong Arcata-McKinleyville High School Orchestra (ArMack) will play the score to the 1917 silent film while the percussion section provides convincing and sometimes zany sound effects. Buster Keaton’s 1921 short comedy The Haunted House will also be shown. Homemade goodies, popcorn and other refreshments will be available by donation.

The Silent Film Festival -- a North Coast family favorite for many years – is a fundraiser to support the student orchestra’s biennial music competition trip, this year to New York City, where the ensemble will play Carnegie Hall under the direction of ArMack Conductor Cassandra Moulton.

Each year, ArMack’s Silent Film Festival gives moviegoers an opportunity to experience Hollywood’s old-time favorites in a way seldom shown – with a live orchestra.  When the two artistic mediums come together the result is nothing short of amazing:  symphony music accompanying every scene of the film with each rising and falling note, illustrating the actors’ antics and emotions.

In The Adventurer, Chaplin plays an escaped convict on the run from prison guards. He falls in favor with a wealthy family after saving their daughter from drowning, only to be hunted by the young woman’s suitor. Keaton’s Haunted House revolves around a bank heist, counterfeiting and a theatrical troupe posing as spooks in a haunted house.

The festival kicks off Thursday, Oct. 13  at 7 p.m. in McKinleyville High School’s multi-purpose room, 1300 Murray Rd.  Screenings continue at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14 and Saturday, Oct. 15. A 2 p.m.matinee is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 15.

The festival continues Thursday, Oct. 27 at 7 p.m. at the Arcata High School Fine Arts Center, 1720 M St., with 7 p.m. shows on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 28 and 29. One matinee performance is set for 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29.

Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door, from any ArMack student or by calling (707) 599-5414.  For further information, visit the ArMack Facebook page or call (707) 825-2400.


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