Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Sounds of the Silents in Britain$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Julie Brown and Annette Davison

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199797615

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199797615.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 20 November 2019

The Art of Not “Playing to Pictures” in British Cinemas, 1906–1914

The Art of Not “Playing to Pictures” in British Cinemas, 1906–1914

Chapter:
(p.111) 6 The Art of Not “Playing to Pictures” in British Cinemas, 1906–1914
Source:
The Sounds of the Silents in Britain
Author(s):

Jon Burrows

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199797615.003.0007

It is traditionally thought that during the first ten years in which permanent cinemas became established in Britain, the accompaniment to silent films was typically supplied by lone pianists who improvised musical themes that subserviently complemented narrative developments as they unfolded on screen. This chapter acknowledges that, following a period in which mechanical musical devices predominated, this model was widely espoused around 1909–10. But it argues that such practices quickly fell out of fashion. Using the evidence of cinema licensing records, as well as debates published in the film-industry trade press, the chapter demonstrates that miniature orchestras had been installed in the majority of cinemas in London by 1913 and that such orchestras rarely attempted to tightly synchronize their music with the films they accompanied.

Keywords:   silent cinema, film music, film sound, music licensing, cinema orchestras, cinema pianist, British cinema

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .