THE WITCHES' SABBATH
An Evening of Silent Horror with Live Piano Accompaniment
Featuring Stephen Horne
At Guy's Hospital Chapel on Sunday the 30th October 2022 - 7:00 pm

The final part of a Halloween weekend triple bill of black and white Horror classics in the eerie environs of Guy’s Hospital Chapel.

Häxan (“The Witch”) is a Swedish 1922 classic of the silent horror genre, directed by Danish film maker Benjamin Christensen. Based on Malleus Maleficarum, a 15th-century treatise on witchcraft that Christensen found in a Berlin bookshop, the film blends documentary and drama as it charts the historical roots of witchcraft, demonology and Satanism from Medieval times to the Twentieth Century.

Häxan was filmed only at night or in a closed set to create a dark, sinister aura, which allowed fantasy and reality to merge. Its graphic depiction of grave-robbing, torture, nudity, demonically-possessed nuns and sexual perversion were too much for many censors and it was banned in France, Germany and the USA. It acquired a cult following among the Surrealists.

The original screening in 1922 was set to classical music by Schubert, Gluck and Beethoven. Tonight’s performance will be accompanied by acclaimed silent movie pianist Stephen Horne.

Tickets £15 including a delightful gin cocktail and a 20% donation towards the King's Chaplaincy Trust

Stephen Horne
Stephen has long been internationally considered one of the leading silent film accompanists. A house pianist at London’s BFI Southbank for over thirty years, he has played at all the major UK venues and recorded music for many DVD and online releases of silent films. Although principally a pianist, he often incorporates other instruments into his performances, sometimes simultaneously.

He regularly performs internationally and in recent years his accompaniments have met with acclaim at film festivals in Pordenone, Bologna, San Francisco, Telluride, Paris, Cannes, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Shanghai, Seoul, Istanbul, Berlin and Vienna.


Image Credit: An original poster for Haxan. Public Domain via the Wikimedia Images.