FOTH resumes silent film series with live music in 2022

BRANDON — Classics from the silent film era return to the big screen this May at the Brandon Town Hall and Community Center, which will host another season of vintage cinema with live music.

This year’s offerings in the historic facility include classic comedy from Harold Lloyd and Buster Keaton as well as a 100th anniversary screening of the pioneer horror film ‘Nosferatu’ for Halloween.

It’s the 11th year of the popular silent film series, which gives residents and visitors a chance to see great movies from the pioneering days of cinema as they were meant to be shown—on the big screen, with an audience, and accompanied by live music.

Screenings are held once a month on Saturday nights starting in May and running through November. Admission is free; donations are encouraged, with proceeds to benefit the Town Hall’s ongoing restoration.

Over the years, silent film donations have helped support projects including handicapped access to the 19th century building, renovating the bathrooms, and restoring the structure’s original slate roof.

Silent film accompanist Jeff Rapsis will return to Brandon Town Hall to create live music for this year’s silent film series

Live music for each silent film program will be provided by Jeff Rapsis, a New Hampshire-based performer and composer who specializes in scoring and presenting silent films.

In accompanying films live, Rapsis uses a digital synthesizer to recreate the texture of the full orchestra. He improvises the music in real time as the movie is shown.

“It’s a real treat to return to Brandon for another season of great silent film,” Rapsis said. “If you’ve never seen one of these movies in a theater, check it out. These films were the pop culture of their day, and retain their ability to hold an audience and deliver a great time at the movies.”

Harold Lloyd and Jobyna Ralston star in ‘For Heaven’s Sake’ (1926)

First up is Harold Lloyd in ‘For Heaven’s Sake’ (1926), an uproarious romantic comedy on Saturday, May 14 at 7 p.m.

In the movie Lloyd plays a wealthy young man smitten with the daughter of an impoverished clergyman who ministers to the urban poor. On the day Lloyd and the girl plan to marry, Lloyd’s wealthy country club friends kidnap him to prevent what they see as an embarrassing mistake.

Can the urban mission’s petty criminals and chronic alcoholics rescue Harold and get him to the church on time?

‘For Heaven’s Sake,’ promoted with the tagline ‘A Man With A Mansion, A Miss with a Mission,’ became the year’s 4th-highest grossing film, earning $2.6 million. Critic Leonard Maltin described the movie as “…a screamingly funny silent comedy.”

Other films in this year’s Brandon Town Hall silent film series include:

• Saturday, June 11, 7 p.m.: ‘The Adventures of Robin Hood‘ (1924) starring Douglas Fairbanks Sr. 

• Saturday, July 23, 7 p.m.: ‘Sherlock Jr.‘ (1924) and ‘Battling Butler‘ (1926). A Buster Keaton double feature showing the stone-faced comedian at the peak of his physical comedy powers. 

• Saturday, Aug. 13, 7 p.m.: ‘Blood and Sand‘ (1922) starring Rudolph Valentino in his first starring role as a sexy bullfighter in this romantic thriller. 

• Saturday, Sept. 10, 7 p.m.: ‘The Flying Ace‘ (1926). This is a rare example of movies produced for black-only theaters in segregated parts of the nation; added to the National Film Registry in 2021. 

• Saturday, Oct. 22, 7 p.m.: ‘Nosferatu‘ (1922). Just in time for Halloween, this celebrates the 100th anniversary of F.W. Murnau’s original adaptation of Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’ story. 

• Saturday, Nov. 19, 7 p.m.: ‘Her Sister from Paris‘ (1925) starring Constance Talmadge and Ronald Colman. The scene: Europe. The cast: Rich people. Effervescent battle-of-the-sexes comedy. 

For more information and the latest updates on Covid-19 safety protocols at the Town Hall, visit For more about the music, visit

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