Silent Treatment

Cleveland jazz combo doesn't need a Wurlitzer to accompany vintage movie.

Cleveland art
In this age of surround sound, special effects, and larger-than-life color images, is there any reason to watch monochromatic melodramas on the silver screen anymore? You betcha, says Rare Blend keyboardist Bobbi Holt. "I had been wanting to do this type of presentation for a long time," she says. "I thought it would be a really modern spin on classic silent cinema." A passion for the past is what led the band to create Bridging the Gap, which couples silent-film screenings with the quartet's jazz-blues blend of originals as accompaniment. "Most people think that, when they see a silent film, they're going to hear a Wurlitzer organ or a piano," says Holt. "They don't expect a band in a multigenre discipline complementing a film." This weekend, the band will breathe new life into a vintage-1916 silent version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. "I hope that people see something on a screen that they normally wouldn't," says Holt. "Maybe they'll take a peek at another silent film down the road." The show starts at 7 p.m. today and 4 p.m. tomorrow at the Mayfield Village Civic Center's Reserve Hall, 6622 Wilson Mills Road in Mayfield Village. Tickets are $8 to $10. Call 440-442-5506 or visit
Sat., April 5, 7 p.m.; Sun., April 6, 4 p.m., 2008
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