Sunday, January 31, 2010

PA Arts Sunday - The ASO Does Chaplin's Gold Rush

One of Charles Chaplin's masterpieces is The Gold Rush. It is his only movie about Alaska. I've seen it several times over the years, but never before with live music, performed by the Anchorage Symphony, or in such a huge venue - the Atwood Concert Hall.

It is the first time I've seen it with the tramp not initially getting Georgia's note from her, but as a prank from the guy to whom it was actually written, the sleazy hunk, Hank Curtis.

This was my favorite time watching it, except possibly when we (the Whittier Volunteer Fire Department) showed it in pre-television Whittier in 1977, to a room chock-full of school kids, who laughed pretty damned hard.

Here's the most famous scene from the movie, Chaplin's "table ballet"

After the movie, we took in the ice sculptures outside the PAC:


HarpboyAK said...

A lot of folks don't realize that Chaplin wrote musical scores for almost all of his films. I think Gold Rush and City Lights are two of the best scores.

Years ago, just after the Kimball theater organ from Juneau's 20th Century theater was installed in the atrium of the State Office Building, the State Library pulled the old 16mm prints out of their film library, and had a double feature showing with organ accompaniment by the late Frank Butte, who helped install the organ. It was fantastic!

I sure wish someone would practice Chaplin's scores and do that again...

Anonymous said...

Is it true that Matt Zencey is gone from the ADN?

Philip Munger said...


Great story on the 16mm prints.


Apparently Zencey and a few others have taken buyouts and early retirements. Plus, there are also layoffs.

One person who wanted to stay took a buyout instead to help save Elizabeth Bluemink's job.