The Yellow Ticket
*Note: This event will take place in the Logan Center Performance Hall, first floor.
Post-screening discussion with Alicia Svigals, Marilyn Lerner and Professor Tom Gunning, Department of Cinema & Media Studies and the College.
The Film Studies Center is proud to present The Yellow Ticket – a live multimedia concert event featuring the eponymous 1918 Pola Negri silent film with a performance of an original score by Alicia Svigals, one of the world’s foremost klezmer fiddlers, and virtuoso Canadian pianist Marilyn Lerner.
Svigals, who has composed for violinist Itzhak Perlman and the Kronos Quartet and helped found the Grammy-winning Klezmatics, has crafted a lush score inspired by klezmer and other Eastern European folk forms, classical composers such as Béla Bartók and Ernest Bloch, European café music, and contemporary improvisation. She will be joined by Lerner, whose work spans the worlds of jazz, improvisation, klezmer and 20th century classical music.
Remarkably progressive for its time, The Yellow Ticket is the first film to explore Jewish discrimination in Tsarist Russia and stars famed Polish actress Pola Negri, Hollywood’s first European silent film star. It tells the story of Lea, a young woman who hides her Jewish heritage to study medicine, and addresses ethnic and religious discrimination, human trafficking, and poverty in startlingly progressive terms.
“When I see the interiors of the film, I smell the apartment of my great-grandmother [who emigrated from Odessa]... It’s a magic, rare, strange, mysterious, fascinating little item. It’s like photos of my great-grandparents come to life.” - Alicia Svigals
(Victor Janson and Eugen Illes, Germany, 1918, 50 min, silent, b/w, DCP)
Sponsored by the Logan Center for the Arts, Center for Jewish Studies, Film Studies Center, and Tom Gunning/Mellon Fund.
The Yellow Ticket performance was commissioned by the Foundation for Jewish Culture’s New Jewish Culture Network, a league of North American performing arts presenters committed to the creation and touring of innovative projects. The Yellow Ticket debuted at the Washington Jewish Music Festival, presented by the Washington DC Jewish Community Center, through a commission made possible by the Arthur Tracy “The Street Singer” Endowment Fund. The New Jewish Culture Network has received major support from the Howard and Geraldine Polinger Family Foundation. Additional support is provided by Sylvia M. Neil, the Milken Family Foundation, and other donors.