In February, Scott Freiman makes his fourth visit in six years to the Cleveland Museum of Art. Freiman is a composer, musician, teacher, record label owner, and software entrepreneur who is also a leading expert on the Beatles. His popular “Deconstructing the Beatles” lectures have taken him not only to theaters and colleges across the United States but also to corporations such as Pixar, Google, and Facebook.

“Deconstructing the Beatles” is a series of multimedia presentations that examine and analyze the many innovative songwriting and production techniques used by the Fab Four. Freiman’s lectures are supplemented by photographs, graphics, film clips, and snatches of sound and music. He has prepared individual talks on Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The White Album, Revolver, Rubber Soul, “Strawberry Fields Forever,” and the Beatles’ early years. All of these lectures have been presented in Cleveland, drawing a few thousand fans; the first four talks have recently been videotaped for showings in movie theaters across the country.

Freiman’s in-person appearance in February (postponed from January) finds him premiering a brand new show: “Roll Up! Deconstructing the Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour,” and also reprising 2013’s “Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Deconstructing the Early Beatles.” Neither of these lectures has been recorded or filmed.

Each program $20; CMA members, seniors 65 & over, students $15. Both programs $35; members, seniors, students $25.

Saturday, February 4, 2017, 1:30 pm to 4:00 pm

(Rescheduled from 1/7/2017)
Using a treasure trove of rare audio and video, Beatles expert Scott Freiman traces the formative years of the famous band and the creation of their first singles.

Sunday, February 5, 2017, 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm

(Rescheduled from 1/8/2017)
Beatles expert Scott Freiman takes an in-depth look at the composition and construction of some of the best tracks from the band’s psychedelic 1967 album and TV show, including “The Fool on the Hill,” “I Am the Walrus,” “Penny Lane,” and “All You Need Is Love.”

Morley Lecture Hall
An intimate 158-seat hall and the regular home of the Cleveland Museum of Art Film Series, the Morley Lecture Hall features two variable-speed 35mm film projectors, a 5.1-channel movie stereo sound system, DLP projector, and a masking system that adjusts to all format aspect ratios. Films can be projected from a variety of systems including 35mm, Beta SP, DVD, Blu-ray, and even video servers.

Recital Hall
An intimate 158-seat hall and home to the museum’s two 16mm Xenon projectors and a second DLP video projector.

Gartner Auditorium
Originally designed by Hungarian-born architect Marcel Breuer as part of the 1970 addition to the Cleveland Museum of Art, Gartner Auditorium is a 683-seat multi-use hall that houses the McMyler Memorial Organ (Holtkamp, 1971). The auditorium closed in 2005 for renovation and has been redesigned and refurbished by nationally recognized Cleveland-based architects Westlake Reed Leskosky in collaboration with leading acoustician Paul Scarbrough.

Contains two 35mm film projectors with the ability to project movies in five different aspect ratios onto a Cinemascope screen measuring 37 feet wide. The new auditorium also features 5.1 Dolby Stereo Surround Sound and utilizes our newly installed and calibrated performance audio system.

Curator of Film

In 1986, John Ewing became the first person hired by the Cleveland Museum of Art to do nothing but program films. More than 1,900 films later, he's still at it.

Ewing came to the museum after having run various film series in Granville, Ohio; Canton, Ohio; and Cleveland. He programmed his first films as director of the 1973 January Term film program at his alma mater, Denison University, in Granville. He was also an officer of the Denison Film Society. Between 1975 and 1983, Ewing was the director of the Canton Film Society, a program of the Stark County District Library that presented free international films every week. From 1984 to 1986, he ran the weekly Monday Cinema series at the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library—a program he founded. The mid-eighties also saw Ewing booking films for the Canton Palace Theatre and working as a freelance film presenter at such venues as the New Mayfield Repertory Cinema, the Cleveland Institute of Art, and the Allen Memorial Medical Library.

Ewing co-founded the Cleveland Cinematheque in 1984, and started showing films under the auspices of the Cinematheque at Case Western Reserve University in 1985. In 1986, Ewing moved the Cinematheque to the Cleveland Institute of Art, where it continues to this day, screening 250+ different films annually. In addition to working two days a week at the art museum, Ewing is also the full-time director of the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque.

At the museum, Ewing has increased the number of film screenings to two per week. He oversaw the acquisition and installation of a pair of new 35mm projectors in Gartner Auditorium in 1988, and—11 years later—installed a second set of 35mm projectors in the museum's Lecture Hall, making the Cleveland Museum of Art one of the few art museums in the country with two fully functional film projection booths.

He received the prestigious Order of the Chevalier (Knight) of Arts and Letters in 2010 from the Republic of France. Sir John was recognized for his significant contributions to French culture through the museum’s film program and the Cleveland Institute of Art’s Cinematheque. He’s in good company. Robert Redford, Uma Thurman, David Bowie, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Jackson Pollock have all received the award in previous years.

The Cleveland Museum of Art possesses one of the oldest museum film programs in the United States. Frances Bolton purchased the first film projector in 1935 and the museum showed films and hosted some prominent visiting filmmakers (e.g., Maya Deren) in an auditorium located in what later became part of the Asian galleries.

Starting in the early 1970s, the museum presented free screenings of 16mm films in Gartner Auditorium. Films at that time ranged from 1930s American comedies (W.C. Fields, the Marx Brothers, et al.) and other international classics to popular recent English-language period pieces (The Go-Between) to cutting-edge new movies (1970s German films by Wenders, Herzog, and Fassbinder).

The film program is a major year-long presence that attracts thousands of people to the museum. Since July 1986, the museum has presented at least two different feature films every week (on Wednesday nights, Fridays nights, or Sunday afternoons), and numerous special events are peppered throughout the year. With about 90 different movies shown annually, our film program is one of the most adventurous and respected museum film programs in the U.S.

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