Bioscope Newsreel no. 5

Merton on the road again
Following its hugely successful tour of the UK in 2008, Paul Merton’s Silent Clowns show, with accompanist Neil Brand, will be hitting the road again in Spring 2009. Merton and Brand will be giving eight shows at the Edinburgh fringe festival 8-16 August. Read more.

Silents in Shasta County
The Shasta County Arts Council of Redding, California, is holding its annual silent film festival, 24-25 October. Highlights include Metropolis, Blackmail and Peter Pan with actors reading out the intertitles to make the show more child-friendly. Read more.

A course in slapstick
The Museum of Modern Art, New York, is holding a course over five Wednesday, November-December on slapstick, entitled ‘Cruel and Unusual Comedy: Social Commentary in the American Slapstick Film’. The instructors are Ron Magliozzi, Steve Massa and Ben Model, who also provides the music. Read more.

Singing the silents
Published in paperback this month is Ken Wlaschin’s The Silent Cinema in Song, 1896-1929: An Illustrated History and Catalog of Songs Inspired by the Movies and Stars, with a List of Recordings. It is the history of the response of popular song to the silent cinema, with information on availability of recordings. Read more.

‘Til next time!