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[Access Contemporary Music] The Sound of Silent Film Festival is This Weekend

- Integrating Musical Creativity Into Everyday Life
ACM’s popular Sound of Silent Film Festival turns 15 this year!  We’re celebrating the anniversary with two ambitious virtual programs featuring fourteen short modern silent films with newly commissioned musical scores performed live.
This year’s selections include three dramatic thrillers, two comedies, one dark comedy, one very dark comedy, an offbeat romance, two compelling dramas, one that kind of pulls at your heart strings, a compelling look at modern Hong Kong, two gorgeously animated films and a dance film.
The event is free but you must register to receive the streaming link.  We’ll email it out the morning of the event. If you’ve already registered no need to do so again.

Register Now
Friday, June 26 7:00 PM CDT
Saturday, June 27 7:00 CDT



Chris Ramaekers – Music Director
David Wetzel – Technical Director
Alyson Berger – cello
Christie Miller – clarinet
Marianne Parker – piano
Trevor Patrick Watkin – flute

Gloria Yehilevksy – percussion
Amy Wurtz – piano
Henry Zheng – violin


Register Now
Film Synopses
Friday, June 26 7:00 PM CDT
Demons Before Breakfast
(Drama, Comedy)
Film by Lauren McCune
Music by Jonathan Russell

Lou feels isolated with only her personal demons to keep her company. As her feelings of solitude grow, so do the number of demons living in her house.



What If

Film by Winnie Cheung
Music by Lynn Bechtold

In a post-gender world, men wouldn’t be punished for being vulnerable and women wouldn’t have to stay submissive in order to succeed.

Unfortunately, we’ve all been subjected to the same gender narrative dating back to Adam and Eve. But what if there was another creation myth? One where gender was erased altogether?

Devil’s Food Cake
(Dark comedy)
Film by
JohnBen Lacy and Mike Elsherif
Music by Seth Boustead

A simpleton makes a deal with the devil in an attempt to win over a judge’s heart at a cake contest.


Film by
 Manuel Alvarez Diestro
Music by David Keller

Hong-Kong is one of the densest cities in the world. As there is not much space available, new towns are adjacent to the cemeteries.

These days in Hong-Kong the world of the living coexists with the one of the dead. Meanwhile, Hong Kong inhabitants move from place to place. They are waiting for a final displacement.

Constructive Interference
Film by 
John Akre
Music by Ursula Kwong-Brown and Danny Erdberg

Two sound waves discover the power of cooperation despite the challenges of interference.

Film by Alexander Bickford
Music by Sarah Wald

In Saturday detention, a hungry student struggles to make it to lunchtime.



Listen to Me
Film by Toacha Her
Music by Conor Daly, Fiona Ffrench, Liam Lupescu, and Lila Mora

A deaf girl, bullied and broken, takes drastic action. A nearby student worker does the same.

Get the F K Outta Paris

(Drama, thriller)
Film by Greg Emetaz
Music by Rob Steel

A text message turns a depressing laundry night into a mad dash for survival.



Saturday, June 27 7:00 PM CDT
(Drama, thriller)
Film by Farhad Pakdel
Music by Trevor Patrick Watkin

A smart city tracks and analyzes a woman walking through the city. Things she does are interpreted and logged by the city system, but are they drawing an accurate picture of the woman?

(Dark comedy)
Film by Brian Zahm
Music by Oren Boneh
An allegorical tale of a person whose soul is possessed by artistic pursuit and the quest for perfection.

The Gift
(Animated, Romance)
Film by Julio Pot
Music by Gabriel Malancioui

The story of an ordinary couple. When he gives her a small sphere pulled out of his chest, she can’t separate herself from her new gift… even after they break up.

Film by Kyle Flaherty and Josh Stone
Music by Dominic Johnson and Jacob Greenberg

Music by Dominic Johnson and Jacob Greenberg
An experimental short about passing the torch to one’s successor. In a post-apocalyptic world, one young warrior explores new territory to survive, and must be brave when he finds what’s in store for him there.
Music by Dominic Johnson.

Early Retirement
Film by David Mair
Music by Gene Pritsker
A grizzled cop seeks vengeance for his fallen partner.

Death by Omelette
Film by Greg Emetaz
Music by Victoria Malawey
When a woman’s suspicions of infidelity are confirmed, she makes her husband a killer omelette…

Beyond the Barrier
(Animated, Drama)
Film by Martha Mapes
Music by Paul Ayres
A young boy and girl find a way to remain friends in the midst of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Film by Iacopo DiGirolamo
Music by Lyudmila German
An expressionist nightmare in which an inventor and his colleague test the ‘Automaton’, a machine able to create things from nothing. The machine works perfectly as long as the items it’s asked to create start with the letter N…in German. The results of the test will be predictably catastrophic.
Access Contemporary Music (ACM) believes the music of our time deserves a wider audience and that there are many people who would love contemporary classical music if they only knew it existed. As a production company, ACM creates innovative performances designed to foster creativity, allow for collaboration, and bring contemporary music to new audiences.
Productions include the “Live at the Davis Theater” concert series, Thirsty Ears Festival, Sound of Silent Film Festival – now performed in Chicago, New York and Mexico City, collaborations with Open House Chicago, Open House New York and Doors Open Milwaukee, the ACM School of Music which teaches musical creativity to more than 300 students in four storefront locations in Chicago and commissioning initiative Composer Alive.
More information about ACM may be found at

The 2020 Sound of Silent Film Festival is made possible by a generous grant from Hugh Schulze

With Additional Support From:

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