Calendar of Events

Silents Roars! Film Festival — Spring 2017

WSM, in collaboration with Okumu Productions, is excited to announce its first silent film festival coming this spring!
Open to Tompkins County youth ages 14-18 and inspired by the role Ithaca and the region played in silent movie history a century ago, Silents Roar! is an exciting opportunity for high school age students throughout  the County to create a short silent film.  Silents Roar! encourages young filmmakers and those who have never before made a film to enter! The festival will culminate in a screening and awards ceremony at Cinemapolis on May 20th, 2017. For more information and submission information visit and Silents Roar! on Facebook.





October is Silent Movie Month!  

Our presenting sponsor for Silent Movie Month is Travis Hyde Properties!


Thursday, October 13th at 7:30pm Nosferatu (1922) is screening with a live score performed by the Invincible Czars.  At Sage Chapel on Cornell’s Campus. For more details and ticket information please visit  Co-Sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum.

Saturday, October 15th at 2pm Our annual Buster Keaton Matinee at Cinemapolis. For ticket info visit  Sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum in collaboration with Cinemapolis. $6 per person. 12 and under FREE.

Saturday, October 22nd at 2pm  The Flying Ace, a rare screening of the landmark 1926 silent film with an introduction by historian and writer Barbara Tepa Lupack.  At Cinemapolis with a reception in the lobby to follow.  Free!  Donations welcome. For more information visit  Co-sponsored by The History Center and Wharton Studio Museum.

Thursday, Oct 27 at 7pm at Fritz Lang’s Destiny (1921) with musical accompaniment on piano by Dr. Philip Carli.  At Cornell Cinema. For more details and ticket information please visit  Co-sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum

WSM thanks Travis Hyde Properties, its presenting sponsor, for Silent Movie Month.

Silent Movie Month Partners:



About Silent Movie Month
Mayor Svante Myrick officially proclaimed October as Silent Movie Month in the City of Ithaca in 2012 and every October since WSM  celebrates Ithaca’s movie history through events, screenings, and workshops in collaboration with Cinemapolis, The History Center, Cornell Cinema, Tompkins County Public Library, Gimme! Coffee, and Petrune. Presenting Sponsor is Travis Hyde Properties.




About WSM Events

Join us in Making Noise About Silent Film! Each year WSM hosts several silent film-themed events right here in Ithaca, NY: October’s Silent Movie Month, Silent Movie Under the Stars (every August), opening receptions for our community-based exhibits, co-sponsorship of film screenings at Cornell Cinema and FLEFF (Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival,  and a fundraising event every two years. Read more details below and sign-up for the WSM e-newsletter to receive announcements and invitations for upcoming events.

Scroll down to browse our list of past events.


Past WSM Events

August 2016:


Silent Movie Under the Stars 2016

What:  6th Annual Silent Movie Under the Stars
When: Saturday, August 27th, 2016 (rain date Sunday, August 28th)
Where: Taughannock Falls State Park, Trumansburg, NY
Screening begins approx. at 8pm — sundown.
TessOfTheStormCountry_Screening_WhartonStudioMuseumA Wharton Studio Museum summer tradition continues on Saturday, August 27th, 2016 when WSM proudly presents its 6th Annual Silent Movie Under the Stars screening at Taughannock Falls State Park. The evening features a stunning big-screen showing of Tess of the Storm Country, a 1922 film adaptation of Ithacan Grace Miller White’s 1909 novel of the same name, starring the inimitable Mary Pickford. The screening will be accompanied by live music composed and performed by Cloud Chamber Orchestra.  Everyone is encouraged to bring a picnic, lawn chair and blanket and enjoy lovely Taughannock Falls State Park and a view of Cayuga Lake as the sun sets before the movie begins at sundown (around 8pm). Admission is free and open to the public (there is a $5 per car parking fee at the park).
Silent Movies Under the Starts is produced in partnership with the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation. For the 4th year, M&T Bank/Wilmington Trust is the event’s presenting sponsor. WSM welcomes additional sponsors for this popular event. Contact Donations to support the continuation of this annual event are always welcome and accepted the night of the event at the WSM info table, or visit our contribute page here.

Wilmington-Trust-MT-logo-2013-e1409628663387          NYSParksLogo



April 2016:

Friday, April 1, 2016
FLEFF presents Sadie Thompson (1928) at Cinemapolis. Co-sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum. FLEFF celebrates its 19th year  March 28th-April 3, 2016 !
FLEFFSadie Thompson image FLEFF 2016This film version of Somerset Maugham’s classic story “Miss Thompson” features the creative talents of Gloria Swanson, Lionel Barrymore*, and Raoul Walsh. Swanson and camerman George Barnes were nominated for Oscars, in the first year of the Academy Awards. * Lionel Barrymore starred in the Wharton Studio-produced serial “Romance of Elaine” in 1915.

Sadie Thompson proved to be a landmark of the silent era. Perhaps its greatest Cinemapolis--e1412077175138achievement was the film’s uncompromising translation of Maugham’s controversial story of a San Francisco prostitute and a South Pacific reformer. Swanson correctly maintained that the film’s silence was its greatest asset, for the churches and the Hays office could not censor what they couldn’t hear.

The tragedy of Sadie Thompson is that for many decades the last scenes were missing from the sole existing print. In this 1987 restoration by Kino International, the final minutes have been carefully recreated, using the original script, the star’s own collection of stills, film footage where appropriate, and an orchestral score commissioned for the completed film.

Neglected and forgotten over the years, Sadie Thompson has emerged as an important triumph of the silent era and Swanson’s greatest performance ever. (From

For tickets and more information, visit

Saturday, April 2, 2016
FLEFF presents Epic of Everest (1924) at Cinemapolis. Co-sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum. FLEFF celebrates its 19th year  March 28th-April 3, 2016 !

Epic of Everest posterFLEFF2016

The third attempt to climb Everest FLEFFculminated in the deaths of two of the finest climbers of their generation, George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, and sparked an on-going debate over whether or not they did indeed reachCinemapolis--e1412077175138 the summit. Filming in brutally harsh conditions with a hand-cranked camera, Captain John Noel captured images of breathtaking beauty and considerable historic significance. The film is also among the earliest filmed records of life in Tibet and features sequences at Phari Dzong (Pagri), Shekar Dzong (Xegar) and Rongbuk monastery. But what resonates so deeply is Noel’s ability to frame the vulnerability, isolation and courage of people persevering in one of the world’s harshest landscapes. The restoration by the BFI National Archive has transformed the quality of the surviving elements of the film and reintroduced the original coloured tints and tones. Revealed by the restoration, few images in cinema are as epic – or moving – as the final shots of a blood red sunset over the Himalayas. (From

With live musical accompaniment by Cloud Chamber Orchestra!
For tickets and more information visit

Thursday, April 7th, 2016 7:30pm *free event!*
Cornell Cinema presents The Yellow Ticket (1918), co-sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum in Sage Chapel on the Cornell campus.
Cornell Cinema is thrilled to host this multimedia event featuring a rare 1918 silent film and an original score by renowned klezmer violinist/vocalist/composer Alicia Svigals, performed live along with virtuoso pianist Marilyn Lerner on Sage Chapel’s grand piano. The Yellow Ticket was made at the end of World War I, on the eve of the Russian revolution. It stars an adolescent Pola Negri, who would later become the legendary femme fatale of the silent era, and tells the story of an innocent young Jewish woman from a Polish shtetl who is constrained by anti-Semitic restrictions to lead a double life in a brothel while attempting to study medicine in Tsarist Russia. The film includes precious footage of the former Jewish quarter of Warsaw and the people who lived there.

Alicia Svigals is the world’s foremost klezmer fiddler, a founder of the Grammy-winning Klezmatics and a 2014 NEA MacDowell Fellow in composition. She and Ms. Lerner have performed with the film at venues across the country, including at the National Gallery of Art, Mass MoCA, and Lincoln Center. The event is cosponsored by Cornell Council for the Arts, the Jewish Studies Program, the CU Klezmer Ensemble, the Department of Music, the Wharton Studio Museum, Temple Beth-El, Tikkun v’Or, and Cornell Hillel. This event is free – tickets are not required. Seating is limited, so arrive early! For more information visit Cornell Cinema.

Friday, April 8 thru August 15, 2016
Exhibit: The Biggest Little Fashion City: Ithaca & Silent Film Style
Opening Reception: Friday, April 8th 4:30-6pm  Human Ecology Building Level T

Wharton Studio Museum is excited to be co-sponsoring this multimedia exhibit on fashion of the silent film era curated by Cornell’s Costume & Textile Collection and the Department of Fiber Science and Apparel Design. Opening night is Friday, April 8, 2016.   The exhibit will feature a WSM produced display about the historic Wharton Studio. Stay tuned for more details….Silent Film poster_Castle_01_081_700w


March 2016:

Thursday, March 24, 2016 7:15pm
Screening: Cornell Cinema presents Aelita: Queen of Mars (1924), co-sponsored by Wharton Studio Museum at Cornell Cinema in Willard Straight Hall.

CornellCinema-e1412215390779Before Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, there was the dramatic sci-fi brilliance of Russian director Yakov Protazanov’s Aelita: Queen of Mars. Wrought with subtle erotic tensions and national predilections of the moment, the Martian adventure is known for its incredible leaps of fantasy running parallel to documentary-style depictions of 1920s Moscow. Love crosses light years in this popular Russian classic featuring fantastic constructivist set designs! With a live original score performed by local musicians Anna Coogan & Tzar. For tickets and more information visit Cornell Cinema.



Annual Fundraising Events

2015 Cinematic Soiree


2013 Hands of Orlac Screening & Party

2011 Perils of Pauline Screening & Party

2010 All Together Now Screening & Party

2009 Movie Clips & Party at Greystone

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