Mike was a student at Kenyon College in the late 1940’s when upper classman Paul Newman started a film festival. For his opening selection, Newman chose an early silent classic, “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.” The musical score arrived too late for anyone to prepare, and young Mike, a budding jazz musician, stepped in to improvise the music.
Strange as it seems, thirty years elapsed before he played for another silent film. It was 1978 when the Friends of the Berkshire Athenaeum announced that they were going to show Mike’s old friend, “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” and Mike provided a live accompaniment. He has played for dozens of films since then.
For a partial listing of films Mike has accompanied, click here .
Here are a few brief excerpts from Mike's performances.