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A film still from the black and white silent film, Cops, a man is wearing a flat brimmed 20s style hat, he has a sullen look and his behind bars
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Silent Shorts with live score by Phillip Johnston

This is a past event


Friday 2 December 2022
From 8pm


Main Square


Lift access
Wheelchair accessible

Getting There

Presented by ACMI & Fed Square with the support of Creative Victoria and the City of Melbourne

Start time: 8.15pm
Duration: 61 minutes (includes 2 x 5 minute intervals between films)
 Unclassified (All Ages)

Celebrate the start of summer out in the setting sun with some silent shorts accompanied by live scores by Phillip Johnston.

Le voyage dans la lune (A Trip to the Moon), Dir. Georges Méliès, 1902, France, 13 mins.

In Georges Méliès’ pioneering visual effects-laden science-fiction short, a party embarking on an exploratory mission to the moon encounter mysterious creatures.

Cops, Dir. Buster Keaton, 1922, USA, 18 mins.

After being rebuffed by his sweetheart for not being a savvy businessman, a young man stumbles across a wad of cash that just might be what he needs to prove himself. However, a series of incidents begin to snowball into something quite out of his control.

This very special free performance is co-presented with ACMI. Arrive early to grab a deckchair or bring your own chair or picnic rug.

We’ll also be shouting you gelato from our friends at Cups n Cones. Serving delicious house-made artisan gelato and sorbets, there will be a selection of nine flavours to suit everyone (6 dairy, 3 non-dairy). Available from 7.30pm-9.30pm or until exhausted (limit 1 per person).

Performed by
Phillip Johnston (saxophone)
Daryl Pratt (vibraphone)
Alister Spence (piano)
Lloyd Swanton (bass)
James Greening (trombone)
Paul Cutlan (baritone sax)
Nic Cecire (drums)

About Phillip Johnston

A saxophonist, composer and arranger of both jazz and new music, Phillip Johnston has been a significant figure in the underground music scene of New York’s Downtown since the beginning of the 1980s, before moving to Sydney in 2005. As a band leader (Microscopic Septet, Fast ‘N’ Bulbous, The Coolerators), duo performer (Joel Forrester, Guy Klucevsek, Peter Dasent), composer of music for film (Music of Chance, Noise, Faithful), silent film (Faust, Page of Madness, The Adventures of Prince Achmed), and multimedia (Wordless! with Art Spiegelman), he has established a unique voice in contemporary music.

The Merry Frolics of Méliès was premiered at New York’s Lincoln Center in 1997, and subsequently has been performed across the US, Europe and the USA. His book on contemporary scores for silent film, Silent Films/Loud Music (Bloomsbury) was published in 2021.

Not-So-Silent Cinema has been supported through the Melbourne City Revitalisation Fund, a partnership between the Victorian Government and the City of Melbourne.

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