Sunday, December 27, 2015

EPIC event: Pandora's Box starring Louise Brooks screens at LACMA on Jan 17

In what promises to be an epic event . . . . on Sunday, January 17th, acclaimed musical accompanist Michael Mortilla will perform improvised live scores for five silent films, including Pandora's Box (1929) starring Louise Brooks, in the galleries of New Objectivity: Modern German Art In The Weimar Republic, 1919–1933 at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). The special event will last for the duration of the museum’s opening hours on Sunday, January 17. Films will be screened with 5–10 minute breaks in between.

More information HERE.

"Mirroring the central themes of New Objectivity, the films depict the social realities of the Weimar Republic, ranging from the misery of the lower class—as portrayed in Slums of Berlin (1925)—to new forms of mass consumer culture and a fascination with new technologies, architecture, and machinery, as brilliantly assembled and edited in Walter Ruttmann’s masterpiece Berlin, Symphony of a Great City (1927). The renewed interest in the everyday is beautifully depicted in Robert Siodmak’s People on Sunday (1930), while Georg Wilhelm Pabst’s Pandora’s Box (1929)—based on Frank Wedekind’s play—expressed the destabilization of traditional identities and gender roles, with American actress Lousie Brooks as the personification of the New Woman.

Michael Mortilla is an award-winning pianist, composer, and sound designer. He has produced over 1,000 works for film, TV, radio, theater, dance, and the concert stage. Throughout his career, Mortilla has performed accompaniment for countless iconic American and German silent films and has been commissioned to compose numerous scores for restored silent films by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Among other organizations that have commissioned works by Mortilla are: the National Film Preservation Foundation, the Library of Congress, and the UCLA Film & Television Archive. He has performed at the White House, the Library of Congress, the Motion Picture Association of America, and many other prestigious museums and performance and broadcast venues."

Of note: in the 1980's, Mortilla was associated with Martha Graham and the Martha Graham Dance company as their touring company pianist and Miss Graham’s musician of choice for most events and projects over a period of six years. Some sixty years earlier, Graham was associated with Louise Brooks, as both were touring members of the Denishawn Dance Company during the 1922-1923 season.


Film Schedule:

10:30–11:38 am Berlin, Symphony of a Great City, 1927, 65 min, directed by Walter Ruttmann
11:45 am–1:40 pm Slums of Berlin, 1925, 113 min, directed by Gerhard Lamprecht
1:50–3 pm People on Sunday, 1930, 73 min, directed by Robert Siodmak
3:15–5:30 pm Pandora's Box, 1929, 109 min, directed by Georg Wilhelm Pabst
5:40–6:50 pm Berlin, Symphony of a Great City, 1927, 65 min, directed by Walter Ruttmann

LACMA, BCAM Level 2
Free, with general admission



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