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Ghost Show| 16mins
Director: Alan Knight | Producer: Mitch Miller
Focus Years: 2009 | Country: United Kingdom
Subject Tags: art, community, creativity, culture, europe, media, united kingdom
Quality Tags: Optimistic, Slow, Activating, Harmonizing
'GHOST SHOW' is a short documentary film about the Travelling Show people of Scotland. About 80% of Scotland’s Show Travellers are based in Glasgow. This marginal life, a world full of Fairgrounds, Theatre, Showmanship and Illusion, hides a long and fascinating history – the early days of cinema. This is a film about the rituals, lifestyle and the legacy that shaped this unusual world. The ‘Ghost Show’ was the birthplace of cinema. Louis de Prince may well have been first; Edison may well have invented the sprocket, but it was the itinerant show-people, the ‘travellers’ who made it more than just a novelty. Taking their shows to tiny hamlets, secluded villages and the vast charter fairs of the major cities of Scotland they showed one-reelers to the working classes; trick films, comic sketches, re-enactments, topicals, actualities… Originally part of a small variety programme, the Ghost Show was to be supplanted by the bioscopes or cinematographs. The Shows were THE place to see films between 1897 and 1910.

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Alan Knight

United Kingdom


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