Hunchback of Notre Dame Silent Film/Organ Concert with Dennis James at Southeast Ohio History Center

On Sunday, November 3rd, 2019, the Southeast Ohio History Center’s powerful pipe organ will sing out as renowned professional organist Dennis James performs the accompanying score of a classic silent film. The film for this event will be the 1923 classic The Hunchback of Notre Dame, starring Hollywood’s Man of a Thousand Faces, Lon Chaney.

The evening, which promises to be entertaining, is the signature fundraising event for the History Center. Doors will open at 5:30pm for a social hour, which will include hors d’oeuvres and drinks, a silent auction, and music. The movie begins at 7:00pm with a live auction taking place during the intermission.

Tom O’Grady, of the Southeast Ohio History Center, said ‘we chose this film to bring more attention to the setting of the story. The recent catastrophic fire in the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris has brought more awareness to the fragility and importance of heritage sites. The loss of heritage sites, locally, and at the global level, greatly affect many people.”

One percent of the net profit of the History Center fundraiser will be donated on behalf of the people of Southeast Ohio toward the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral. Just as it takes a village to protect historic sites locally, it takes a much wider community to protect a World Heritage Site such as Notre Dame.

Says O’Grady from the History Center, “This year, the event is bigger and better. We have a significant donor offering a match to others and have a growing number of sponsors who are helping to make it a very special evening.”

For more than 40 years Dennis James has played a pivotal role in the international revival of silent films with live music. Beginning as an accompanist for university screenings, James now tours worldwide under auspices of his Silent Film Concerts production company presenting professional silent film programs with accompaniments ranging from solo piano or theatre organ, to chamber ensembles and full symphony orchestras. Performing to film at an ever-increasing number of sites throughout the world, James is celebrated for providing the most comprehensive selection of authentic silent films with live music presentations available today.

James recently performed sellout silent film programs with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at Orchestra Hall and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra at Meyerson Symphony Center, and his international silent film presentations have been seen most recently in Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, England, Singapore, France, Germany, Austria, The Netherlands and Italy.

Tickets to the event went on sale October 1st and can be purchased by calling the Southeast Ohio History Center at 740.592.2280. The price per ticket is $50 for History Center members and $60 for non-members. “There are a limited number of seats and tickets will be going fast,” says O’Grady. “People are already calling, so I wouldn’t wait too long.”

For more information about the Silent Film/Organ Concert call the History Center at 740-593-7552 or visit the web at