Silent Clowns Film Series

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The Silent Clowns Film Series is NYC's longest-running regularly-scheduled showcase for classic silent film comedy (since 1997)!  During pre-COVID times, we have presented monthly, year-round showings of the silent movies of Chaplin, Keaton, Laurel & Hardy, Lloyd, and many others, all with live musical accompaniment by renowned silent film accompanist Ben Model. Our shows are hosted by film historians Ben Model and Steve Massa, who introduce the films and hold a Q&A after the screening.  Our shows are curated by film historian Bruce Lawton. 

Our series has been on hold since March of 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and we look forward to returning to presenting in-person programming when this can happen, hopefully later in 2021. Our programs, ordinarily presented on a monthly year-round basis on weekend afternoons, are geared to classic film fans as well as to families.

The Silent Clowns Film Series presents its shows in the beautiful Bruno Walter Auditorium, located in the NY Library for the Performing Arts, at Lincoln Center.

The PBS television show "NYC Arts" aired a feature story on the Silent Clowns Film Series in 2017 and re-aired the segment in 2018. You can watch it here (segment begins at 02:39):


The Silent Clowns Film Series is dedicated to the memory of Walter Kerr, whose landmark book, "The Silent Clowns," was the inspiration for our series (and its name), as well as to the memory of William K. Everson, Lee Erwin, David Gill, Herb Graff, Ron Hutchinson, Eric James, Cole Johnson, Eleanor Keaton, Paul Killiam, Don Krim, Don & Karl Malkames, Warren Rothenberger and John Rogers...and dreams that survive.

Our shows have been presented in NYC's Upper West Side since we began in 1997, at the 78th Street Theatre Lab, the New-York Historical Society, The West Side YMCA's Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater, Makor, the Arclight Theatre...and since 2010 at the Bruno Walter Auditorium at the Library for the Performing Arts.

This film series is a production of Silent Cinema Presentations, Inc., a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.  Silent Cinema Presentations is supported by a generous grant from the Ira M. Resnick Foundation, the Artrepreneur Foundation, and its membership.  We encourage those of you who attend our shows or who want to support us financially to make a donation and become a Friend of the Silent Clowns Film Series. Click on 'membership info' (above) for details.