SWIFF and Coffs Con’s signature live event celebrates Safety Last!

Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Harry Lloyd’s black-and-white film ‘Safety Last!’, SWIFF’23 will screen the comedy classic with a live soundtrack, composed and performed Coffs Harbour Regional Conservatorium musicians.

A LOCAL arts collaboration sees Screenwave International Film Festival 2023 (SWIFF’23) working creatively with the Coffs Harbour Regional Conservatorium to bring to life a unique film and live music experience in the signature SWIFF Live series.

Celebrating the 100th anniversary of Harry Lloyd’s black-and-white film, ‘Safety Last!’, the comedy classic will be screened with a live soundtrack, composed and performed by Coffs Harbour Regional Conservatorium Director Pat Brearley, within a trio, on Wednesday April 26 April at the Jetty Theatre.

Taking key motifs and themes from the original soundtrack of the film, Conservatorium musicians will then create an experience that brings improvised live music and film into one multi-sensory experience.

The key themes will form ‘pillars’ throughout the film that are then complemented by improvised music, creating a thrilling and exciting soundscape to match with the escapades on screen.

“I can’t wait to see this exciting project come to life,” Pat Brearley told News Of The Area.

“Working alongside Dave and the whole team at SWIFF is always an exciting time and this unique event combining different areas of the arts and culture industry is something that’s sure to impress.”

The film’s star, comic genius Harold Lloyd, likened often to Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton, was an innovator of cinematic techniques, death-defying stunts, sharp social commentary, and laugh-out-loud comedy.

The story of Safety Last! sees Lloyd playing ‘The Boy’, an upstart fellow that moves to New York City to make some cash to support his loving girlfriend (Mildred Davis), but soon discovers that making it in the Big Apple is harder than it looks.

When he hears a store manager will pay $1,000 to anyone who can draw people to his store, he convinces his friend, the ‘human fly’ (Bill Strother) to climb the building and split the profit with him.

But when his friend gets in trouble with the law, ‘The Boy’ must complete the crazy stunt on his own.

What ensues results in one of the most iconic images in the history of cinema, Lloyd dangling precariously from the hands of a giant skyscraper clock.

This all-ages live performance, exclusive to SWIFF, is a collaboration between the Screenwave International Film Festival and the Coffs Harbour Regional Conservatorium.

The signature SWIFF Live series is an annual program where film screening meets live performance.


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