The Ridges
The Ridges (Lexie Alley)

Silent Symphony: The Ridges Provide Live Score to Horror Classic

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This Thursday, orchestral-folk band The Ridges return to Athens to provide an original live score to a silent film classic.

The Athena Cinema is hosting “The Ridges Present: Nosferatu, a Symphony of Horror,” Halloween evening at midnight.

The band, which recently performed the piece at the Cincinnati Art Museum, has been anticipating its interpretation of F.W. Murnau’s 1922 masterpiece Nosferatu since late August.

“Bascially, we’re all big fans of classic cinema,” said frontman Victor Rasgaitis, who added that the band has a special appreciation for the film.

However, fans of Murnau’s original should be aware of some changes—the band edited the piece from 94 minutes down to 35.

Rasgaitis gave two reasons for cutting the film’s length: To account for the attention the audience will give to the group’s performance and “to make it The Ridges’ version of the film.”

The band also has a treat in store for its fans, according to banjoist Drew Poulsen.

“It’s an all-original score,” he said, “but there are a lot of hints and allusions to Ridges’ songs that are already written.” For example, the titular character’s theme draws from the band’s song “Shadows.”

Athena Cinema Managing Director Alexandra Kamody said that the theater is no stranger to Nosferatu.

“We hosted a live music performance by the a few years back and it was a great success,” she explained, adding that she is excited to hear The Ridges’ interpretation of the film.

The show is being presented in conjunction with The Athena Cinema and ACRN, which handled the event’s booking and promotion. ACRN General Manager Ben Haager said that the station handled the booking and is in charge of promotion.

“This is one of the more artistic events ACRN has been involved with,” said station General Manager Ben Haager, who attended the technical rehearsal for the performance and expects show-goers to be pleased.

Although the show will be more subdued than a regular Ridges concert, the band hopes their Athens fans will turn out to catch this unique performance.

“I can only hope that it’s [Nosferatu] as big of a deal as it is when we usually come to town,” said Poulsen.

Tickets are currently available at The Athena Cinema. For more information about The Ridges, visit their website, Facebook page or follow the band on Twitter.