Silent Film Benefit To Take Place On May 21st

Two Silent Comedy Classics Take Center Stage at the Catalina Island Museum Silent Film Benefit on May 21st

April 26, 2016, AVALON, CATALINA ISLAND – The Catalina Island Museum Silent Film Benefit on May 21st presents a unique opportunity to experience early cinema the way it was intended. Two of the funniest comedies of the silent era – rarely shown on the big screen – will feature live accompaniment by a renowned quintet on the stage of the magnificent Avalon Casino Theatre.

Known as the “great stone face,” Buster Keaton stars in the film One Week. The story follows a newly married couple after they receive a build-it-yourself house as a wedding gift. The instructions indicate the house can be built in “one week” but chaos ensues when a rejected suitor secretly re-numbers the crates of materials.

Harold Lloyd, the bespectacled all-American boy next door, takes center stage in The Kid Brother. Set in the American West, Lloyd is forced to face off against his brawny brothers, save the town and his family’s reputation, all while trying to win the heart of the girl of his dreams. Considered by audiences and critics as one of Lloyd’s best, The Kid Brother also includes scenes filmed on Catalina Island.

Just like in the silent era, both films will be accompanied by live music. No orchestral group in America is better known for their work in silent films than the acclaimed Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. A quintet of piano, violin, cello, clarinet and cornet, the Mont Alto Motion Orchestra has provided accompaniment to silent film classics for over 25 years. They have enjoyed enormous popularity, performing to superlative reviews before sold-out audiences across the United States. Film critic Leonard Maltin calls himself a “longtime fan,” and The New York Times wrote of them: “The results are often breathtakingly beautiful and always in the strict service of the film…”

No other event combines the musical talents of the Mont Alto Orchestra with two of the funniest comedies of the silent era and one of America’s most majestic movie palaces, the Avalon Casino Theatre.

The 29th Annual Catalina Island Museum Silent Film Benefit takes place at 1:00 pm on Saturday, May 21 in the historic Avalon Casino Theatre. Live the full experience of the “Roaring Twenties” and come in period dress! Prizes will be awarded to the best-dressed individual, best-dressed couple and best character from each film.

Do not wait to purchase tickets. This year’s event is expected to sell out. Tickets are $25 for members of the museum and $28 for general admission. Purchasing tickets is easy. Please call 310-510-2414, visit the museum in person, or go to the Silent Film event page at

Members Pre-Performance Talk

Join us for the Members Pre-Performance Talk, prior to the Silent Film Benefit on Saturday, May 21, from 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm in the Avalon Casino Theatre. Dr. Michael De Marsche, Executive Director of the museum, will present an insiders view of the museum’s new home, the Ada Blanche Wrigley Schreiner Building. Just one month before the Grand Opening Celebration, De Marsche will share insights into the building’s architecture and the exciting exhibitions, events and programs planned. Become a member today and join us!

The Catalina Island Museum is Avalon’s sole institution devoted to art, culture and history.  The museum, its digital theater and store are currently located on the ground floor of Avalon’s historic Casino and are open 7 days a week, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information, the museum may be reached by phone at 310-510-2414 or at its website:

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