Another Grand festival of silents

posted by Michael Zoldessy on September 25, 2013 at 9:42 am

EAST GREENVILLE, PA — The Grand Theater, the Upper Perkiomen Valley’s fully restored 1924 landmark, presents another outstanding silent film lineup for the 2013 season. Come enjoy entertainment the way movies were first seen at the Grand – SILENT!

On Sunday, September 29th at 3PM we will be present the 1921 movie that defined heartthrob Rudolph Valentino in “The Sheik”.

On Sunday, October 27th at 3PM we present the horror masterpiece “The Phantom of the Opera” (1925) starring ‘The man of 1000 faces’, Mr. Lon Chaney.

We cap off our 2013 silent series on Sunday, November 17th @ 3PM with an afternoon of comedy featuring shorts from Laurel and Hardy and Harold Lloyd. “Do Detectives Think?” (1927); “Flying Elephants” (1928); and “Haunted Spooks” (1920).

Accompanying for all shows on our 1923 2 manual, 7 rank Marr & Colton Theater Organ will be Mr. John Baratta, with his own personal scores.

Ticket purchases are recommended in advance for these very special shows and are available during regular business hours or by mail with SASE to: Grand Theater, PO Box 244, East Greenville PA 18041-0244 . Checks or money orders only please. $10 per show or all three (3) shows for $25.

About the Grand:

Opened October 4, 1924 the Grand is celebrating it 89th anniversary in 2013. After a near $1 million restoration in 2004-2005, the Grand has once again become a community landmark in the Upper Perkiomen Valley and a regional attraction. The Grand boasts: $5 evening admission and $3 matinee admission for current films! Surroundings nothing like the megaplexes – the Grand is indeed GRAND! No pre-show advertising. Professional staff with 1920 era uniforms. Children’s matinees and the select classic films! A fully restored 1923 2 Manual, 7 Rank, Marr & Colton Theater Organ. The Grand is also the proud recipient of the 2007 “Outstanding Small Business” award from the Upper Perkiomen Valley Chamber of Commerce. Most recently, the Montgomery County Planning Commission named the Grand their recipient of the 2011 “Montgomery Award” for downtown revitalization efforts. The spring of 2012 saw the largest investment in equipment in the theater’s history in new, state-of-the-art digital projection.

Artist Biography:

Mr. John V. Baratta

John V. Baratta is a native of Lodi, New Jersey and presently resides in Wantage , New Jersey . After graduating from high school, John attended Jersey City State College where he studied piano and organ, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in music education. He has recently retired from teaching music in the public school system for thirty years.

John is the resident organist and director of music for the Grace Evangelical Church in River Edge, New Jersey. Mr. Baratta is the house organist for the historic Newton Theatre located in Newton New Jersey. Some of his other activities include chairmen of education for the North Jersey Chapter of The American Guild of Organists and also serves on the education committee for the New York Theatre Organ Society. During the past several years John has put together an educational student outreach program which is sponsored by the New York Theatre Organ Society, Garden State Theatre Organ Society and North Jersey American Guild of Organists. With the use of a digital instrument this Student Outreach Program includes going to schools K- 12 to present the students with a hands on demonstration and workshop seminar of the organ, its history and music literature.

He is the recipient of the Music Talent Award given by the Garden State Arts Center and also the Music Achievement Award given by the Lodi Rotary. During his tenure as a band director in the public schools he was awarded the honor of conducting the New Jersey Region I Middle School Concert Band and Jazz Ensemble.

During the last several years John has played the Albert Schweitzer Memorial Organ at Spivey Hall which is located in Morrow, Georgia . One of the highlights of John’s recital series includes performances at Cathedral of Saint Patrick in New York City and on the new five manual Allen Organ at Johnson Ferry Baptist Church in Marietta , Georgia . Many performances have been given at local churches in and around the Bergen county and Sussex county areas.

This past year he has written and published an instructional music method series for the young music students at the middle school level. Future plans include the further study of quality organ and piano literature and to present that music to the public as often as possible.

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