Berklee Silent Film Orchestra performing Score to 'Phantom of the Opera'

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The Berklee Silent Film Orchestra will perform its powerhouse score of Lon Chaney’s “Phantom of the Opera,” under the direction of Professor Sheldon Morowitz, at the Avon Theatre in Providence tonight, December 12, at 7:30 p.m. Morowitz, of Berklee’s Film Scoring Department, will perform the new score to the latest digital restoration of the classic film.

Professor Morowitz was packing for an evening flight to San Francisco, where the orchestra was to perform at the prestigious San Francisco Silent Film Festival.

“The Phantom of the Opera” will be the North American premiere during four days of continuous silent films,” he said. “We are thrilled to be bringing this live film concert to the iconic Avon Cinema the following week.”

To date, the BSFO has scored and performed their music for 15 silent films, including a sold-out performance of “Battleship Potemkin” last year at the Avon.

“We are fortunate to have the best student players in the world at Berklee,” Morowitz said. “Berklee is the place to go if you wish to earn a degree in film scoring.”

“We have a secret weapon for the Avon performance,” he added. “A renowned soprano will actually sing. Add a gigantic percussion section, keyboards to cover certain instruments and some unusual instruments, and the audience will discover just how important the music is to the story.”

Berklee also commissions their film scoring to “talkies” and recently did the score for “Outside Providence.”

“Scoring a movie is a collaborative effort,” Morowitz said. “It helps to tell the story. This film is divided into five to seven reels, with a different director taking the podium for each reel.”

We will be at the Avon this evening to experience this intricate and moving art form.

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