Arts, Dining & Entertainment
June 1, 2016

Chandler screens restored 1916 film, “A Vermont Romance”

Chandler screens restored 1916 film, “A Vermont Romance”

Courtesy of Chandler Center for the Arts

A still from “ A Vermont Romance ” shows character Dorothy in one of eight Vermont towns that were a part of the movie.

Friday, June 3 at 7 p.m. — RANDOLPH — On Friday, June 3 at 7 p.m., Chandler Center for the Arts and the Vermont International Film Foundation present a screening of “ A Vermont Romance ” in the Upper Gallery at Chandler, in Randolph. Tickets are $8 each.

The film has a new soundtrack composed and played by Bob Merrill and will be accompanied by a discussion with a panel of filmmakers, historians and archivists.

The high-definition 2K restoration is part of a tour through a number of towns in Vermont. The restoration of the film is a co-sponsorship of VTIFF/VAMP and the Vermont Historical Society, supported by small grants and the generous donations of individuals.

The 1916 film, “ A Vermont Romance,” is the first feature film ever made in Vermont. This screening is part of a statewide tour presenting the film with live piano accompaniment and a panel of experts, in venues throughout Vermont to celebrate the film’s 100th birthday. This movie is an extraordinary piece of Vermont folklore. It was commissioned by the Vermont Progressive Party (affiliated with Theodore Roosevelt’s national Bull Moose party) and its newspaper, the Vermont Advance. Scenes were filmed in Burlington, Grand Isle, Newport, St. Johnsbury, White River Junction, Rutland, Chester, and Bellows Falls. The film is both a romance and a scenic tour of Vermont. It tells the tale of Dorothy, a country girl who befriends a rich girl and two city gents who are out for a drive in the country. Upon the death of her father she loses the farm where she lives and works. Almost penniless, she moves to Burlington to find work, and her adventures begin. Filming began Wednesday June 21, 1916 and was completed 10 days later! The first screening of the film was held Sept. 16, 1916 in Essex Junction, followed by Burlington, Waterbury, St. Johnsbury, Rutland, South Royalton, Bethel and more.

Tickets are available online by calling the box office at 802-728-6464 weekdays between the hours of 3 and 6 p.m.

Chandler Music Hall is fully accessible and equipped for the hearing impaired. Chandler Center for the Arts is located at 71-73 Main Street, Randolph. For more info, visit chandler-arts.org.

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