Silents in the Cathedral, a Scary Fun Night of Silent Film

Come to the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library’s 14th annual Silents in the Cathedral Friday, Oct. 28 at 7pm. This year we feature The Magician, a screenplay adapted from a novel by W. Somerset Maugham. Funny and thrilling, The Magician follows a beautiful female spellbound by a magician seeking artificial life and the doctor who saves her.

The film is hosted by Grace Episcopal Cathedral at 701 SW 8th Avenue. Parking is adjacent to the Cathedral. Popcorn and bottled water will be sold as a fundraiser by the Cathedral’s youth group before the films and at intermission. Admission is free. Costumes encouraged, but not required.

Showing with The Magician will be a selection of short films created by the movies’ first wizard of special effects, Georges Melies. Five of his films will be shown, representing his most interesting works. Titles include The Prolific Magical Egg (1902), The Inventor Crazybrains and his Wonderful Airship (1907) and Satan in Prison (1907). Those shorts will last about 15 minutes and will preceed The Merry Widower (1926), a 20-minute Hal Roach Studios film featuring James Finlayson playing a man whose neglected wife is drifting away from him. He resorts to hypnosis to try to get her back.

Marvin Faulwell, noted theater organist, and Bob Keckheisen, percussionist, will provide musical accompaniment to the films. Denise Morrison, film buff and historian, will share the history and little known Hollywood gossip about the productions.

For more information, contact the library’s Special Collections department at 785-580-4510.

This program is funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. It is a partnership program between the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library and Grace Episcopal Cathedral.

A public relations professional, editor and writer, Lisa shares the library story in her blog posts, in the bimonthly Library News, and media interviews. A self-described social media and news nut, Lisa harnesses that passion to raise awareness and understanding of the library's vital role in this community.