Pandoras Box silent film screening with accompaniment

Press release

September 15, 2023

Stambaugh Auditorium Continues Silent Film Tradition For The 13th Year

YOUNGSTOWN, OH (September 15, 2023) – Stambaugh Auditorium will present the silent film Pandora’s Box with live organ accompaniment provided by Jay Spencer on Sunday, October 29th at 2:30 pm. The annual event typically brings over 1500 audience members to the Concert Hall for a Halloween extravaganza.

Pandora’s Box is a 1928 silent film based on two plays by Frank Wedekind; Earth Spirit and Pandora’s Box. Louise Brooks plays Lulu, who is a wickedly charming showgirl and the mistress of a wealthy publisher, Dr Ludwig Schön. A tragic series of events is set into motion when Schön finds Lulu entertaining another man. In his attempt to end his relationship with Lulu, Schön confesses he is engaged to another woman. An intense argument results in Lulu shooting and killing him. Now on the run, Lulu’s downward spiral devastates everyone around her.

Organist Jay Spencer has been playing the organ at the Canton Palace Theatre since the early 90s, and performing with Silent films there for thirteen years. In addition to performing on the organ, Spencer has also spent a great deal of time volunteering at the Palace Theatre, from concessions to ticket taker, he says he “loves everything about it [the theatre]”. Spencer prepares his repertoire for silent film accompaniment by watching the film several times and then utilizing popular music from the era to compliment the themes and characters of the films.

The E.M. Skinner Pipe Organ, Opus 582 is the only remaining Skinner organ in the area. The organ features a four manual consoles, 67 stops, and nearly four thousand pipes that vary from the smallest which is the size and weight of a #2 pencil to the largest which is 30 inches by 32 feet and weighs 750 pounds. There are 58 ranks altogether.

Tickets are on sale now. Tickets cost $7 with a $3 service fee, and refreshments will be available to purchase. PNC will once again be serving as “Presenting Sponsor” and has provided a grant of $5,000 to help to underwrite the cost of the performance. Additional sponsorship opportunities for this and other events are available. Please contact the Development Department at 330-747-5175 or [email protected].