Take a couple of dozen silent comedians, rare and rediscovered gems of film comedy, brilliant musical accompaniment, special guests, film historians, the best slapstick, sight gags, situation comedy and insane acrobatics from the silent era, and what do you get?
The Kennington Bioscope’s Silent Laughter Weekend, of course! Initially starting as a one day ‘Silent Laughter Saturday’ in 2015, the event has since grown to become a weekend long festival,.
Silent Laughter events celebrate all things silent comedy, with a special emphasis on unfairly forgotten films and performers rarely seen on the big screen. Each festival’s programme is an eclectic mix of classics by the great names – Chaplin, Keaton, Lloyd, Laurel and Hardy – with forgotten gems worthy of rediscovery. Harry Langdon, Lupino Lane, Mabel Normand, Dorothy Devore, Raymond Griffith, Clara Bow, Eddie Cantor and Monty Banks are just some of the performers spotlighted so far. We frequently have rare films from archives and private collections, as well as premières of newly discovered footage (not just what has recently been released on DVD!)
If that wasn’t enough, the cream of the UK’s silent film accompanists turn these films into a true live cinema event, and all films are introduced by authors and silent comedy experts, such as Kevin Brownlow, David Robinson, David Wyatt and Glenn Mitchell.
Events take place at London’s Cinema Museum, a wonderfully eccentric venue steeped in history: It was once part of the workhouse where Charlie Chaplin stayed as a child, and Lambeth Walk, made famous by Lupino Lane, is less than a mile away.
Find out about previous events here: