Atlantic Coast Orchestra

The tradition of accompanying silent films with music dates back to the origins of cinema. In the era of silent films, it was very uncommon to have a specific musical score, and the music that accompanied the film projection was usually improvised and left in charge of the instrumentalist(s). Later, film studios implemented general scores composed of sporadic indications for sound effects that should fit with certain moments of the film. “The General” fits historically in this last description; in it, the soundtrack was usually improvised, either on the piano or by small chamber orchestras, based on general scores or arrangements from local composers. The American composer Andrew Earle Simpson wrote (2013, rev. 2014) an all-new score to “The General” in order to follow the action and emotional content of the film in as much detail as possible. His main purpose is that the musical score supports the projected image without overcoming the cinematic narrative but rather naturally amplifying the expressive elements of the story. The goal of joining Simpson’s score with “The General” was to create an enriched aesthetic experience, where two different arts combine and articulate providing a unique visual and musical experience. In the score, according to the composer, “there is almost no margin for error: the conductor must remain synchronized with the film, and synchronize the orchestra with it, as well. Human beings speed up and slow down, and variation in tempo is a natural part of musical performance; however, film runs at a single, constant pace, and the challenge – and the thrill! – is to perform with expression while still tracking the screen.”Simpson’s score, “The General, music for the 1926 silent film comedy starring Buster Keaton for chamber orchestra”, performed by the Atlantic Coast Orchestra under the musical direction of maestro Luis Miguel Clemente, debuts in Portugal at the opening of the 25th Curtas Vila do Conde.
  • Atlantic Coast Orchestra

  • Atlantic Coast Orchestra
Buster Keaton, Clyde Bruckman, 1926
USA, FIC, 01:19:11,
The Civil War, around 1862. Johnny Gray wasn't selected by the Confederate Army because they think he will be more useful as a train conductor. His fiancee suspects that it was because he was a coward. He proves that he's not by going off on his own in search of the northerners who took his train, and Annabelle along with it. He'll get them both back!  
PRODUCTION Joseph M. Schenck; Buster Keaton COPY CONTACT Maria Chiba - Lobster; +33143386969,, SCRIPT Al Boasberg, Clyde Bruckman, Buster Keaton, Charles Henry Smith, Paul Girard Smith PHOTOGRAPHY Dev Jennings, Bert Haines EDITING Buster Keaton, Sherman Kell MAIN ACTORS Buster Keaton, Marion Mack, Glen Cavender, Jim Farley, Frederick Vroom, Charles Henry Smith, Frank Barnes