Ten Nights in a Barroom (1926)
Sat 2/10: 11:00a
Presented with the Second Saturday Silent Series, pairing a classic silent film with a live score played by Bill Rowland on Circle’s restored 1928 theater pipe organ. Tickets on sale soon - $5 adults, $2 kids 16 and under. Preview the series at the video link below!
"Ten Nights in a Barroom" is based on the temperance novel of the same name by Timothy Shay Arthur from 1854. This story is the same one as told in the melodrama "The Drunkard" at the Tulsa Spotlight Theatre for the last 70 years, where it is played for laughs, but this film plays it straight as a serious preachment against alcoholism. It should be noted that at this same time the Eighteenth Amendment, "Prohibition" was in effect in America.
The all-black cast was a production of a company called the "Colored Players Film Corporation" of Philadelphia, whose goal was to produce films that uplifted the African American spirit by combating the humiliating, stereotypical minstrel portrayals of black Americans in the films of that time period. During its brief time operating from 1926 to 1929, the production company released four films before going out of business after its final one. Its competition was Oscar Micheaux with his Lincoln Motion Picture Company, which also featured all-black casts. The stars are Charles Gilpin, Myra Burwell, Lawrence Chenault, and Harry Henderson and the direction is by Roy Calnek.