Cultural Screenings

Cultural Screenings, films that showcase music, dance and art around the world, are screened on select Thursdays every month, with an encore screening on select Sundays. Think of this series as armchair travel with a cultural bent, a larger-than-life window on places, exhibits and shows you may wonder about but not be able to visit first-hand.

Admission is $15 for Cultural Screenings; the spring music feature, designed  with *, has general and discounted admission prices ($11 and $8.75).

All Thursday shows at 7:30 p.m. and all Sunday shows at noon unless otherwise noted.

This spring, The Tull Family Theater offers to option to:

  • Enjoy the Renaissance treasures of Florence—Michelangelo, Raphael, Leonardo, Botticelli—up close, without the crowds
  • Experience the magic of live music composed specifically to enhance the on-screen action of silent Charlie Chaplin films
  • Hear and see the intense music festival that accompanied the ’70s Rumble  in the Jungle Ali-Foreman heavyweight match
  • Soak up the natural beauty and color palette of Dutch superstar garden designer, which uses plants for both structural impact and late-season blooms.

Florence and the Uffizi

Thursday, March 21
Sunday, March 31

Filmgoers can absorb the beauty and connection between Italy and art masterpieces without enduring crowds and waiting in line.

“The documentary both explores and discovers the city of Florence, artistic home to legendary figures like Michelangelo, Brunelleschi, Raphael, Leonardo and Botticelli with a detailed, central chapter dedicated to the very treasure house containing their masterpieces: the Uffizi Gallery,” explains Festival Review.

“The ‘secret story’ of each of the timeless works of art in the gallery is disclosed in all its beauty… This is the chance for filmgoers to experience a unique experience without having to travel to Florence or weave through the crowded halls in a gallery not originally designed to be a visitor’s museum.”

The Charlie Chaplin Silent Picture Show Presented by Tom Roberts with Mary Beth Malek

Sunday, April 14

Classic Charlie Chaplin silent films meld with live music written especially to accompany them. Jazz pianist Tom Roberts was commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra to produce musical scores for Charlie Chaplin film, which he and Mary Beth Malek, principal clarinetist with the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet orchestras, perform while the films screen.

Roberts, a Pittsburgh native, is one of the world’s leading advocates and performers for the complex, fast-moving Harlem stride piano style developed in the 1870s. He has performed with Wynton Marsalis and The Jazz at the Lincoln Center Orchestra, twice at Carnegie Hall and the International Stride Piano Summit in Switzerland. He’s toured with Leon Redbone and has been heard on the Boardwalk Empire soundtrack, NPR and The Tonight Show.

Chaplin is nothing short of “a cinematic genius,” says the International Movie Database. “One of the greatest filmmakers in the history of American cinema, whose movies have even gained notoriety as time progresses.  His films show, through the Little Tramp’s positive outlook on life in a world full of chaos, that the human spirit has and always will remain the same.”

Spring Music Feature

Soul Power*

Thursday, April 18
Sunday, April 28

This Oscar-winning documentary was rediscovered during preparation for When We Were Kings, an award-winning picture about the 1974 Muhammad Ali-George Foreman heavyweight boxing bout tagged as the Rumble in the Jungle.

“Everyone knows something about the Rumble in the Jungle,” states the Boston Globe. “Less well known is that the Rumble had a soundtrack.”

James Brown, B.B. King, Bill Withers, Celia Cruz, The Spinners, Miriam Makeba were among the performers in what then was called “the black Woodstock.”

“If you have any knowledge of these musicians, you will by now have stopped reading and gone off to order tickets to this extravagantly entertaining documentary, assembled by Jeffrey Levy-Hinte from a trove of hundreds of hours of footage captured by some of the world’s finest cinéma vérité camera operators some 35 years ago,” says the New York Times.

Plus the footage captures Muhammad Ali and promoter Don King at their peak!


Five Seasons: The Gardens of Piet Oudolf

Sunday, May 12
Thursday, May 23
In Dutch and English

“During the most spontaneous sequence in Five Seasons, the accomplished garden designer Piet Oudolf is driving through Texas Hill Country to see the wildflowers, and gobsmacked by their beauty,” says the Hollywood Reporter. “’Just like paintings,’ he enthuses. The same could be said of his influential work, although his preference is for perennials that aren’t conventionally pretty, and palettes that consider grays and browns colors too.”

“It’s a curated wildness,” continues the Hollywood Reporter. “’I put plants onstage,” Oudolf says. “And I let them perform.’”

The documentary’s visions of Oudolf’s work, in gorgeous close-ups as well as from drone-photography angles and time-lapse perspectives, will undoubtedly send some viewers to his books and to the gardens themselves.

See these pictures pop on our 4K screens and the crisp, clean sound of JBL Professional 7.1 Surround Sound!