The Mont Alto Orchestra's schedule of silent films and dances

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June 30, 2015

Steamboat Bill, Jr

Chautauqua Auditorium
South of Baseline and 9th
Boulder, CO

7:30 pm

Tough riverboat captain Steamboat Bill (Ernest Torrance) meets his long-lost son, who turns out to be college dandy Buster Keaton. Buster is a disappointment until a hurricane gives him a chance to prove his mettle. Wonderful comedy set pieces and an amazing stunt-filled finale make this a wildly entertaining comedy.

This will be screened from our newly-acquired tinted 16mm Killiam print of this film.

And yes, in a break with past Chautauqua tradition, this screening will be on a Tuesday!

July 22, 2015

People on Sunday

Chautauqua Auditorium
South of Baseline and 9th
Boulder, CO

7:30 pm

Four young Berliners enjoy their weekend in the parks around the city in this unusual realist film about working people flirting and enjoying their day off. The principals were non-actors basically playing themselves, but behind the camera was a who's who list of Germans who -- after fleeing rising Nazi-ism -- became major talents in Hollywood, including Billy Wilder, Robert Siodmak, Edgar G. Ullmer, and Fred Zinneman.

"It really can't be emphasized enough how much of a delight it is to watch People on Sunday. The mood is buoyant, but laced with a hint of underlying cynicism, the camerawork graceful and accomplished, the performances unassuming. It's an auspicious, if ultimately atypical, work from a collaborative group of future filmmaking stars... People on Sunday certainly sounds interesting from an academic standpoint, but it's also a totally enchanting film experience—a quality that will likely catch a number of viewers by surprise." -- Dusty Somers, Blog Critics

Mont Alto was first commissioned to create the score for the Telluride Film Festival, and then recorded their score for the Criterion BluRay edition of the film.

July 26, 2015


The Rialto Theater
Loveland, CO

Ramona (Dolores Del Rio) is the ward of a wealthy ranch owner in early California. Though courted by the ranch owner's son, she falls in love with an Indian sheep shearer -- but this leads her into a world of racial discrimination. Based on the hugely popular and influential 1884 novel by Helent Hunt Jackson, this film was considered lost for decades, but thanks to the Czech Film Archive and the Library of Congress, a new English language print was made available in 2014.

August 17, 2015

The Trail of '98

Chautauqua Auditorium
South of Baseline and 9th
Boulder, CO

7:30 pm

The "Silent Cinema Trio," featuring pianist Hank Troy, percussionist Ed Contreras, and accordionist Rodney Sauer, will create a new score for this often overlooked epic from 1928. Based on a wildly melodramatic novel by Robert Service, the poet of the Klondike, the film follows the fortunes of gold hunters trying to strike it rich in Alaska in 1898, but facing the perils of Arctic conditions, snow, wolves, avalanches, exposure, and unscrupulous claim-jumpers.

The movie was partly shot in Boulder County, where arctic tundra was easily accessible by the Rollins Pass railroad, only recently bypassed by the Moffat Tunnel. Rollins Pass stands in for the daunting Chilkoot Pass, and Colorado's Arkansas River was used to film the dangerous White Horse rapids of the Yukon River.

The Trail of '98 stars Dolores del Rio, Ralph Forbes, Karl Dane, and Harry Carey.

September 13, 2015

Tea Dance

Avalon Ballroom
6185 Arapahoe Ave

2 - 5 pm •$15 / $10 students / volunteers free!

Tango, onestep, waltz, and foxtrot to the sounds of the Mont Alto Ragtime and Tango Orchestra, with singer Susan Rogers. A free lesson will be given at 1 pm by Jim X. Borzym. The Avalon Ballroom is the largest and most pleasant dance floor in Boulder County, and the music is excellently played and eminently danceable.