White Concert Hall to host 19th annual silent film festival

Grandma’s Boy: This film follows a timid young man, Harold, who lives with his grandma. Because his fear is beginning to affect the girl of his dreams, his grandma tells Harold a story about his grandfather in the Civil War.

Kenzie McCoy

Washburn is hosting its 19th silent film festival this Friday from 7 to 10 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. in the White Concert Hall. Admission is free to all students who will be watching an array of famous silent films. Bill Shaffer, director of the campus silent film festival, says that the silent films speak volumes. A live band will also be accompanying all the films.

“[The festival] is a real experience and it’s unique in the way that the movies are shown the way they were meant to be shown, on a large screen with live music,” said Shaffer.

Friday night, also known as comedy night, will begin with a showing of Grandma’s Boy which was made in 1922 and features actor Harold Lloyd.

“Lloyd had a long career and even did some sound films, but he had his greatest success in silent films,” said Shaffer.

Then, actor Buster Keyton’s 1927 comedy, College, will be shown. Saturday’s activities will start off with the 1926 film, The Little Church Around the Corner which stars former Washburn alumni, Claire Windsor. Memorabilia relating to Claire Windsor will be shown in the lobby, along with other displays and merchandise relating to the films. D.W. Griffith’s controversial film, A Birth of a Nation, will be shown Saturday afternoon and The Seahawks will be shown Saturday evening to conclude the festival.

“I highly recommend [The Seahawks] and I think it will be the highlight of the event,” said Shaffer. “It just has one of those things that gets you cheering.”

The festival will also be offering a catered dinner in the Bradbury Thomson Center Saturday evening between the last two silent films. All those who want to attend the dinner, which will also be accompanied with live music, must purchase tickets.