Museum recreates magic lantern show


PITTSBURGH – In conjunction with its groundbreaking, cross-disciplinary exhibition, Light! The Industrial Age, 1750-1900: Art & Science, Technology & Society, Carnegie Museum of Art presents a magic lantern show June 23 at 2 p.m.

A history lesson.

The American Magic Lantern Theater, the nation’s only theater company recreating the magic lantern shows of the 1890s, will perform The Victorian Patriotic Show, in time for the Fourth of July.

Magic lantern shows were a popular 18th and 19th-century form of big screen entertainment that combined projected images with story and song.

The Victorian Patriotic Show gives modern audiences a sense of the visual spectacle and good-natured fun people enjoyed at one of these events in the days before motion pictures.

About the performance.

Antique hand-painted slides depicting patriotic themes, an authentic magic lantern projector, performers in Victorian costumes, and lots of live piano music and audience participation, are all part of the show.

Many of the slides are dramatic scenes from the Civil War era. Among these are scenes from Uncle Tom’s Cabin shown as a soloist performs the spiritual, “Oh, Freedom.”

Other vignettes related to the Civil War show battle scenes from Gettysburg and Bull Run. In another vignette, a Confederate soldier sings a comical parody of “Yankee Doodle.”

Ticket information.

The performance will take place June 23 at 2 p.m. in Carnegie Lecture Hall. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $5 for children and can be purchased in advance or the day of the performance at the museum admission desk. Call 412-622-3288 for ticket information.


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