Art Alert: Silent cinema with live music at Osiris

Ahram Online , Monday 1 Jan 2018

At Land and A Trip to the Moon will be screened with music by Mohamed Nagla

silent films

Osiris’ screening of two silent short films will be accompanied by live music with composer and musician Mohamed Nagla at the piano, on 13 January.

The two films to be screened are At Land, directed and starring Maya Deren, and A Trip to The Moon by science-fiction pioneer George Milies. Despite their differences, both films share a surrealist approach.

At Land is a 1946 experimental, surrealist dream of a film, in which Deren is washed up at sea and meets multiple clones of herself during a strange adventure. The film explores the theme of identity, and struggles of the subconscious.

A Trip to The Moon, is a 1902 French film, in the theatrical style for which Milies became known as a pioneer of innovative special effects, and the best known among hundreds he made. The film follows a group of astronomers who travel to the Moon, propelled by a cannon, and explore its surface in a series of adventures with the people they find there.

The film was lost when Milies retired, and rediscovered around 1930, when his importance to the history of cinema became recognized by film devotees. An original hand-colored print was discovered in 1993 and restored in 2011.

Mohamed Nagla is a musician, composer and distributor. He has composed some of Salah Jahin’s poems, and distributed some Egyptian folk music including El-Helwa Di by Sayed Darwish.

Nagla is interested in the relationship of music with visual art. He previously serenaded the art exhibition of Yasser Rostom with a live trumpet performance at Art Corner gallery, and composed an original piece and performed it on the piano live to the screening of Charlie Chaplin’s film The Kid at the Cairo Opera House.

13 January at 7pm
Osiris, 1 Hassan Mourad St., from Qasr El Aini, 2nd floor, Garden City, Cairo

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