FreshScores: The Great Train Robbery and The Flying House feat. live music by Lost Bayou Ramblers and Mamie Minch
The FreshGrass Foundation, dedicated to preserving, supporting and creating innovative grassroots music and the artists who make it, begins a new commissioning project with FreshScores: original scores by contemporary artists performed live to classic and significant silent films.
Saturday’s FreshScore performances feature Cajun rabble-rousers Lost Bayou Ramblers’ accompaniment to Edwin S. Porter’s 1903 classic The Great Train Robbery, and a second showing of guitarist and singer Mamie Minch’s score set to 1921’s The Flying House.
At just under 12 minutes long, Porter’s energetic Western film is considered a milestone in filmmaking. The Great Train Robbery uses a number of unconventional editing and shooting styles and is one of the earliest films to use the technique of cross-cutting, in which two scenes are shown to be occurring simultaneously, but in different locations. In 1990, it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.”
Set to blues maven Mamie Minch’s original score, The Flying House tells the story of a woman who has a vivid dream where her husband, in order to escape an increase in their mortgage payment, decides to put a gigantic propeller on their house and flies it to a new location where they won’t have to pay their mortgage payment. Flying across the ocean, much of the world, and eventually into outer space, the woman is only awoken from her nightmare after a huge giant attempts to swat the house out of the sky.