100th Anniversary of Ernst Lubitsch's THE OYSTER PRINCESS with live musical accompaniment by Flat Earth Society!
About the film:
The spoiled daughter (Ossi Oswalda) of an American industrialist (Victor Janson) demands that her father procure a prince for her to marry, periodically demolishing their gargantuan villa when she doesn't get her way. An impoverished Prince Nucki (Harry Liedtke) fills the bill, but he wants to make sure the prospective bride is sufficiently wealthy, leading to complications. For director Ernst Lubitsch, the greatest sin of these boorish American nouveaux riches are their bad manners. They sleep too long, keep their guests waiting and talk incessantly. Lubitsch considered THE OYSTER PRINCESS "my first comedy, which showed something of a definite style." Indeed, Lubitsch's satire develops for the first time from his detailed mise en scène, including the sheer pomposity of a wedding feast with 300 waiters, the frustration of a manservant as he paces in circles around an intricately designed parquet floor and the hundreds of photos of eligible bachelors on the wall in the marriage broker's office.
About Flat Earth Society (FES):
FES was founded in 1998, when no-nonsense artist, former architect, clarinettist, saxophonist, keyboard player, composer and producer Peter Vermeersch, wanted to explore new horizons after having convinced music lovers all over the word with Maximalist! and the cult legend band X-legged Sally. Vermeersch, who worked with international artists like Josse De Pauw, Wim Vandekeybus, Vincent Bal, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, Fred Frith, The Simpletones and Jazzwork from Berlin and wrote music for the Arditti Quartet, Prima La Musica and the Smith Quartet, assembled a pack of inspired and inimitable muscians, forming a big band which has nowadays become much more than just a big band. Peter Vermeersch included, the band now consists of a permanent group of 14 musicians. The music of FES, varying from strictly written sheet music to liberating improvisation, is 95% homemade. Streaks of music of other composers are used as inspiration, frequently arranged, adapted and integrated into FES compositions, adding a wide range of atmospheres and styles to the eclectic FES universe. FES, who dares to flirt with other disciplines as theatre and film and owns the ability to seduce a number of different audiences, from more select jazz listeners to a wild young rock public, is at its best live on stage.
Program made possible with support from the Embassy of Belgium and the General Delegation of the Government of Flanders.