Wednesday, March 30, 2011

2nd Toronto Silent Film Festival, March 30 - April 7

The 2nd Toronto Silent Film Festival kicks off tonight at Innis Town Hall (2 Sussex Ave, one block south of St. George St. and Bloor St.).

The opening night screening will be Maciste all'inferno (Maciste in Hell) (1926) directed by Guido Bregnone and starring Bartolomeo Pagano, Umberto Guarracino, Mario Salo, and Elana Sangro. The film will be preceded by SILENT FILMS FROM THE LAWLESS DAYS OF EUROPE 1896-1911, a half-hour selection of short films of 30 seconds to 6 minutes in length. The screening also includes the winning short film from the Toronto Urban Film Festival.

All of the films will be presented with live musical accompaniment. The featured musicians during the festival are Robert Bruce, Andrew Downing & Ensemble, Bill Lasovich, John Lauter, William O'Meara, Laura Silberberg and Andrei Streliaev.

The festival continues until April 7 at various venues around the city.


Toronto Silent Film Festival 2011
March 30 to April 7

As we gear up for our second year, it can be said that the TSFF really started on Monday August 31st 1896. For it was on that day that the first public screening of a miraculous moving shadow occurred in Toronto at the now long gone Robinson's Theatre Musee on Yonge St. near King.

The next 115 years would witness many changes to the city and to the movies but one thing remains the same. When people gather in a darkened theatre to watch movies, something magical happens.

In those early years, men and women filmmakers were alchemists, forging a vast group of films out of pure imagination, creativity and joy -- all of which were captured on celluloid and shared with an audience.

Those films and their creators became the mentors to all that came after -- right down to the technology driven films of today. During this festival we can once again sit in a darkened theatre, some of which are original silent houses, and something magical still happens up on the big screen. It's hard to describe the wonder of silent films, because to do that, you need words. And as the greats of the Silent Era remind us, talk is cheap: their faces say more than the finest author ever could, and to this day, their power pulses from the screen.

Let the Toronto Silent Film Festival return you to a time when images truly spoke -- on the big screen, as they were meant to be seen, and with live accompaniment, as they were meant to be heard. Join us for the sights and sounds of cinema's original classics.

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